Cruise ships banned from centre of Venice
Authorities in Venice have approved a ban on large cruise ships entering the historic centre of the Italian city.
Italian culture minister, Dario Franceschini, said the decision came in response to a request from UN cultural body, UNESCO.
Large ships will now have to dock at the industrial port on the edge of the city until a permanent solution is found.
Virtually all cruising in Europe is currently suspended, however, in response to a resurgence of Covid-19 across the continent.
Critics argue large cruise ships cause pollution and erode the foundations of Venice, which suffers from regular flooding.
Ships will no longer be able to enter the Giudecca canal, which leads to the historic St Mark’s Square.
Franceschini hailed the move, which he described as “a correct decision, awaited for years”.
Pressure to pass a ban on large vessels mounted in 2019 after a cruise ship crashed into a harbour in the city, injuring five people.
However, no permanent solution was found.
Previous initiatives to stop cruise ship traffic have also failed.
In 2013, the government banned ships weighing more than 96,000 tonnes from the Giudecca canal, but the legislation was later overturned.
Image: Adam Eastland / Alamy Stock Photo