The Italian Almanac

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caribbean island

Italian News - December 1

Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi has had an island in the Caribbean Sea named after him, something none of his predecessors can boast. The island belongs to the Central American state of Belize and used to be called Black Birds. From now on it is to be known as Silvio Bay.

Belize Prime Minister Said Wilbert Musa informed Berlusconi of his unusual move during an official visit to Rome last week. The island, described as a "little paradise", is too small to be seen on most maps. It is part of a long coral reef running north-south along the coast of Belize.

It remains unclear why Musa decided to honour his Italian counterpart in this way. Their meeting in Rome was believed to have been an otherwise routine affair, devoted to discussing the main themes of international politics, with a particular focus on Central America.

Berlusconi is on record as saying in 2001 that he once had plans to buy a Caribbean island of his own and had selected one called Majero near Grenada in the Windward Islands. He said his project then came to nothing because Communist forces staged a revolution in Grenada.