US President George W. Bush’s visit to Rome was expected to arouse strong feelings among some Italians and it did. More than 50,000 demonstrated against the US leader’s presence in the city. The vast majority were peaceful but a small minority battled police who responded with tear gas.
Bush was several kilometres away in the Chigi Palace where he held a joint news conference with Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi. Next stop for Bush is Albania and the US President said that the UN must act soon on the issue of Kosovo’s future.
The Serbian province’s ethnical Albanian majority wants independence.