The Italian Almanac

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Italian News - December 15

Italy's homicide rate is the seventh highest in the European Union with more than 700 murders in 2004, according to a crime report issued on Tuesday. The report, compiled by economic and social research institute Eures together with ANSA, said that 710 murders were committed in Italy last year, or 1.2 per 100,000 inhabitants, with two murders less than in 2003.

Almost 74% of all murder victims in 2004 were male, it said. While Italy was seventh among the 25 EU member states, its 2004 murder rate was still lower than the EU average of 2.8 murders per 100,0000 inhabitants, the report said. But it noted that the European average rose sharply last year after ten new members joined the block.

The report said the number of murders committed in Italy country had fallen sharply since the period 1990-1995 when there were an average of 1,430 murders per year. The study found that Fridays and the weekends were the most dangerous times of the week, with 116 murders committed on a Friday last year and 110 on a Sunday. Wednesday was the day with the lowest murder rate - 68 in all.