The Italian Almanac

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Illegal Hero

An illegal immigrant who saved an elderly man from drowning has had an expulsion order quashed because of his heroism. The migrant from Kosovo, 29, dived into northern Italian mountain floodwaters to save a local man from almost certain death. An Alpine soldier helped him pull the man to safety and later tracked him down so he could be given an award for bravery.

But it turned out that, although he`d worked in the local underground construction trade for three years, the Kosovo man didn`t have a permit to stay in Italy. He was served an expulsion order but appealed after getting a regular job. On Tuesday he was rewarded with a residency permit from the town council in Brunico, ``issued for humanitarian reasons``.