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Two former US soldiers found dead in Italy after suspected murder-suicide

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Two former US soldiers found dead in Italy after suspected murder-suicide
File photo of a street in Vicenza: FedericoLovat/Flickr
10:27 CEST+02:00
An American couple were found dead in their home in the Veneto region of Italy on Monday, following an apparent murder-suicide.

The man, aged 44, and his wife, 40, were both former soldiers who had previously worked at the US military base in Vicenza, west of Venice.

Their bodies were discovered by a priest at the military complex, who visited the home on Monday afternoon after growing concerned that the man had not responded to his calls.

The victims were found in separate rooms at their house in Pozzoleone, a small town of around 3,000 inhabitants close to Vicenza, where the husband had been working as a contractor.

After preliminary investigations, police are working on the hypothesis that the couple died in a murder-suicide, according to local paper Vicenza Today. The daily also cited police officers as saying the woman had likely been killed on Easter Sunday, before her husband killed himself either the same or following day.

ANALYSIS: 'Violence against women conditions every aspect of our lives'

A public prosecutor has opened an investigation into the deaths.

In 2017, 103 women were victims of 'femicides' -- or murder directly related to their gender, including domestic violence and sexual assault -- in Italy, according to a report by Prosmedia, a media analysis group at Verona University. According to their data, 11 of these murders took place in the Veneto region, though other reports put the total figure even higher.

Italian police launched a campaign to tackle the problem in November last year, titled 'This is not love' and aimed at raising awareness of domestic violence both in the general population and among police officers themselves, better equipping them to deal with such cases.

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