Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi announces comeback bid

Last Updated: Sun, Dec 09, 2012 05:42 hrs

Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has ended weeks of speculations by announcing that he will run for national elections expected in March next year.

The 76-year-old billionaire abruptly resolved months of speculation about his political ambitions and a week of intense meetings with key allies in Rome and Milan by telling reporters he would seek a new term as prime minister.

"I am coming back out of a sense of responsibility," Berlusconi told reporters outside his AC Milan football club, adding: "I am running to win."

According to the Telegraph, but Berlusconi's first challenge is to convince his own bitterly divided People of Freedom Party (PdL) after he gave reporters a damning appraisal of its leader Angelino Alfano, once considered his protege, saying he was not ready to lead the party.

"Everyone was of the opinion we wanted a leader like a 'Berlusconi of 1994' but there was no one," he said in a reference to his own first term as prime minister, adding: "And it's not that we haven't looked. We have looked."

Many commentators believe the veteran politician has re-entered politics to steer attention away from his legal troubles, the report said.

According to the report, he is appealing a tax fraud conviction and is also on trial over charges he paid for sex with an under-age prostitute at his 'bunga bunga' parties, in the so-called 'Ruby' trial. (ANI)

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