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No Grandi Navi! Venice protests against huge cruise ships

PortandTerminal.com, June 8, 2019

Thousands of people took to the streets in Venice on Saturday (June 8) calling for a ban on large cruise ships in the city following last week’s collision between a massive vessel and a tourist boat.

After a 275-meter cruise ship crashed into a tourist boat, Venice residents have demanded that the giant vessels stay away. The issue of cruise liners sailing Venice’s Giudecca Canal has long been a point of tension

Critics say the waves the ships create are eroding the foundations of the lagoon city, which regularly floods, leaving iconic sites such as Saint Mark’s Square underwater.

According to Italian media, around 5,000 demonstrators marched through the city carrying banners with slogans such as “Keep large boats out of the lagoon”.

Almost five thousand residents of Venice on Saturday protested against the presence of cruise ships in the busy Giudecca Canal, following a ship accident earlier in the week.

Protesters fly a banner that reads, “No Grande Navi” (No big ships) during the demonstration. PHOTO: AFP

No Grandi Navi!

Many of the demonstrators carried banners with slogans such as “Keep large boats out of the lagoon.”

Last Sunday, the 65,500-tonne Opera, a 54-meter high and 275-meter long liner, was approaching a passenger terminal on the Giudecca Canal when it hit the dock and a nearby ferry after a technical problem.

Footage of the incident showed passengers who had been waiting at a wharf in San Basilio-Zattere fleeing for safety as the huge ship, its horns blaring, crashed into the much smaller, moored “River Countess,” which had 110 people on board.

Several tourists were slightly injured in the accident at San Basilio-Zattere, port authorities said.

In response to the incident, Italy’s Transport Minister Danilo Toninelli said the government would come up with a “definitive solution” by the end of June.

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