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Michele Santoro: Wikis


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Michele Santoro
Born July 2, 1951 (1951-07-02) (age 58)
Salerno, Campania, Italy
Occupation Journalist, anchorman, television host and presentator

Michele Santoro (born July 2, 1951) is an Italian journalist, anchorman, television host and presentator.

He also served till October 2005 as Member of the European Parliament for Southern Italy with the Olive Tree, part of the Socialist Group and sat on the European Parliament's Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, being a substitute for the Committee on Culture and Education, a member of the Delegation to the EU-Russia Parliamentary Cooperation Committee and a substitute for the Delegation to the EU-Croatia Joint Parliamentary Committee.


Education and career

Santoro was born in Salerno.

Graduated in Philosophy, he then entered successfully in the media world, leading as editor-in-chief the regional newspaper La Voce della Campania ("Voice of Campania") and having collaboration with some other national newspapers and magazines like Il Mattino, L'Unità and Epoca.

Before being hired by RAI, he had had some experience with a number of radio stations. He started his RAI career in the TG3, the Rai Tre news division, first as journalist from foreign countries, then producing and ideating TV specials and weekly TV magazines, and finally working as cultural responsible, again for TG3.


News shows

Santoro's popularity is essentially based on being the author and anchorman for TV journalistic broadcasts like Samarcanda, Il rosso e il nero and Temporeale, that appeared in coincidence with a period of political turmoil (see Tangentopoli). These often implied debates with politicians, and at the same time ground-breaking reports and questions from the audience. Santoro's shows were perceived as a place where the Italian people confronted their politicians, often perceived to be corrupt or inept.

Santoro left RAI in 1996, because of disagreements with the public television's direction, and briefly worked in Silvio Berlusconi's networks; he came back to RAI in 1999. Since his return, he led a pair of shows for RAI, Circus, for the first channel, and Sciuscià, a show on the second channel. The latter was often composed by a series of reportages, narrated in movie style.

In the last years, he was continuously charged with accusations of partizanship by the right-wing coalition led by Silvio Berlusconi, that personally owns Mediaset and had installed a new board in state-owned RAI after their electoral victory in the Italian general election, 2001. Sciuscià remained on the air until May 2002.

Attacks from Berlusconi

The new RAI board, installed by the centre-right government, decided not to renew Santoro's contract. This followed a declaration of Silvio Berlusconi, then prime minister, at a press conference in Sofia, Bulgaria, where he clearly stated that:

Santoro, Biagi and Luttazzi made a use of the public TV, paid by all, [which is] criminal. I believe it to be a precise duty of the new RAI board not to allow this to happen again.[1]

Shortly, neither Santoro nor the two others could find any more work in RAI, and working for Berlusconi's own TV network (the other half of the TV system) was obviously unviable. A legal dispute has been ongoing, since Santoro contested a violation of his contract by RAI. He was supported by a court decision that should have forced RAI to give him the direction of a news magazine [2], but in the end Santoro was left out.

European Parliament candidate

In the 2004 European elections, Santoro accepted the offer of candidacy proposed by the centre-left confederation called United in the Olive Tree. He was elected as MEP with a great poll success, obtaining a total of more 700,000 votes in Italy as a whole. In the southern-Italian mandate, Santoro defeated Silvio Berlusconi himself with 526,535 votes against 452,326.

Michele Santoro resigned from his europarliamentary office on October 19, 2005, motivating his choice with his willing to go back to his work on RAI, citing a judicial verdict which obliges the Italian national television to reinstate him on his journalistic activity. Contemporarily he announced his participation on RockPolitik, a controversial and longily awaited TV show of Rai Uno, hosted by singer Adriano Celentano, for talking about some issues of media censorship, after Luttazzi and Biagi refused to be guests on the show. [3]

Return to RAI

Following his resignations from the European Parliament, he started working on a new TV news magazine called AnnoZero (Year Zero) broadcasted on Rai Tre and Raisat Extra and initially scheduled to be aired first on April 27, 2006; its debut was however delayed and it started on September 14. The show's regular commentators consist of the journalist Marco Travaglio and the cartoonist Vauro. The episode of the show aired on March 8, 2007, which featured Italian Minister of Justice Clemente Mastella as special guest caused some controversy for his strong position on the DiCo issue. Mastella abandoned the programme in protest during its live broadcast.

See also

Editto Bulgaro Berlusconi's declaration about Santoro,Biagi and Luttazzi.


External links


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