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The EU is headed for Rome for talks as the Italian treasury launches a €10-billion bond sale to try to stem the nation's debt crisis.
Greece raced to form a coalition by the end of Monday after an election victory by pro-bailout parties eased global fears of a Greek eurozone exit.
Three people have died and several went missing after a cruise ship accident off an Italian island sparked chaos as passengers tried to get off.
Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi on Tuesday scraped through a crucial confidence vote in Parliament, overcoming one of the most serious crises in career.
The pope's former butler has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for stealing secret documents from the Vatican that revealed fraud and intrigue.
Catholic leaders from around the world will meet next week for a conference to combat child abuse which will include a penitential service.
Pope Francis has flown in to a papal residence near Rome for an unprecedented encounter with "pope emeritus" Benedict XVI.
Rome was on high alert on Christmas Eve after parcel bomb blasts at the Chilean and Swiss embassies in the Italian capital.