Giovedì, 18 Ottobre 2018

Clini hopes earthquake scientists' convictions 'overturned'


Rome, October 29 - Italian Environment Minister
Corrado Clini said Monday he hoped judges would overturn last
week's guilty ruling against a group of scientists for
manslaughter in connection with the 2009 L'Aquila earthquake
that killed more than 300 people.
"I hope that the L'Aquila verdict is overturned on appeal
because it's impossible to make timely and precise earthquake
predictions, and it is not right to ask that of scientists," he
told Italian television.
Last Monday a court sentenced seven former members of the
country's principal natural-disaster risk-assessment body to six
years in jail and barred them from public office for allegedly
providing "superficial and ineffective" assessment of seismic
risk and of disclosing "inaccurate, incomplete and
contradictory" information regarding earthquake danger.
The ruling, which spurred disbelief and dismay across the
global scientific community, led some of Italy's top earthquake
experts to resign in protest.
Sources told ANSA that Clini had asked to scrap their
resignations as a sign of "solidarity with the scientific
community on the part of the government".
The trial focused on one event in particular, in which the
commission met on March 31, 2009 in L'Aquila to examine
rumblings that had frightened residents for months.
In a memo, the experts concluded that it was "unlikely"
that there would be a major quake, though it stressed that the
possibility could not be ruled out.
One week later the 6.3-magnitude tremor hit, toppling
buildings, killing 309 people and displacing 65,000 more in and
around the city.

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