Francesca Tardioli: Italy's ambassador to Australia dies after falling from home balcony

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By Euronews  with ANSA
Francesca Tardioli had served as ambassador to Australia since September 2019.
Francesca Tardioli had served as ambassador to Australia since September 2019.   -   Copyright  Farnesina / Twitter

The Italian ambassador to Australia has died after falling from a balcony while on holiday in her hometown.

Francesca Tardioli died in her Foligno house on Saturday evening, where she had been alone at the time.

A family member had alerted the authorities but emergency services were unable to revive her. Police are now investigating the incident.

"With infinite sadness, we mourn the passing of Francesca Tardioli, Ambassador of Italy in Canberra, and join in the grief of her loved ones," the Italian foreign ministry wrote on Twitter.

"We will remember her with affection for her admirable professional and human qualities: a great diplomat and servant of the State."

The mayor of Foligno, Stefano Zuccarini, also described Tardioli as an "illustrious fellow" and said he was filled with "sorrow and deep emotion" at the "tragic news".

Tardioli had been ambassador to Australia since September 2019 and had been due to return to Oceania in the near future.

The 56-year-old had also served as Italy's ambassador to Albania and Saudi Arabia, after joining the Italian National Diplomatic Service in 1991.