Rome is out of Expo with just 17 votes. Riyadh (Saudi Arabia) is the candidate who won with 119 votes. Busan (South Korea) obtained 29 votes. Big celebration among the Arabs after the decision of the BIE (Bureau International des Expositions) delegates, who voted 165 out of 182.
Great disappointment in Rome: Giorgia Meloni and the mayor Roberto Gualtieri were personally involved, Jannik Sinner also created a video message to support the Italian candidacy.
«If this is what the international community chooses, by an overwhelming majority, it means that the choice goes to the transactional, not transnational, method. The principle of immediate interest applies, the principle of mercantile drift applies", is the comment of a furious Giampiero Massolo, ambassador and president of the promoting committee.
«It is dangerous - continued Massolo - today the Expo, first the football World Cup, then who knows the Olympics... I wouldn't want it to end up in the buying and selling of seats on the security council, because if this is the drift I believe that the Italy shouldn't be there."
Again: «Until the last minute, neither we nor the Koreans had numbers of this magnitude, so something must have happened on the last mile too. I don't criticize, I don't accuse, I have no proof, but the mercantile drift concerns governments, sometimes it also concerns individuals."
"A bad defeat, we are saddened," commented the mayor of Rome Roberto Gualtieri. "Ours was a beautiful project, but we must accept the defeat sportingly, Riyadh's is a crushing victory."