July 11, 1983 – News for this day started with word on the mysterious disappearance of 15-year old Emanuela Orlandi, whose father was an employee of the Vatican and whose kidnapping sparked interest worldwide, and even brought Pope John Paul II to offer prayers and assistance. Emanuela Orlandi was last seen on June 22nd before her disappearance in what has become a bizarre case with more questions than answers and ties to The Vatican. The week before, a caller claiming to be with a terrorist group, said to be acting on behalf of the Turkish gunman who attempted assassination of Pope John Paul II, offering a swap; Emanuela Orlandi in exchange for Mehmet Ali Ağca, who was sentenced to life in prison for shooting the Pope two years before. He was brought to Rome Police headquarters, where he dramatically shouted his denial of having anything to do with the apparent abduction. Orlandi was a resident of Vatican City, where her father worked at The Vatican Bank. Among several calls, claiming responsibility, the story kept getting more and more bizarre, but the fact remained the same; Emanuela Orlandi was abducted and missing.
In other news – U.S. talks with Salvadoran rebels went south at the last minute – Special Ambassador Richard Stone’s efforts to start talks with the Salvadoran rebels ended in failure. All the participants were available for a meeting in Costa Rica. Stone and two aides on one side and four of the Principle Political spokesmen for the guerrilla movement. But according to a communiqué the rebels issued the day before, procedural problems prevented the meeting from taking place. But none of the rebel spokesmen were willing to spell out just what those problems were. Costa Rican newspapers were reporting deep divisions within the Guerrilla movement over meeting with Stone in the first place. However, hope was held out for the possibility of another meeting at some point in the future and that Costa Rica would continue to act an an intermediary.
All that, and a whole lot more for this July 11, 1983 – as reported on The CBS World News Roundup and the 9:00 network news.