Italian Berlusconi hospitalized in Milan since Thursday – source

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FILE PHOTO: Italy’s former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi reacts after casting his vote in Italy’s mayoral and councilor elections, in Milan, Italy October 3, 2021. REUTERS/Flavio Lo Scalzo/File Photo Reuters_tickers

This content was published on January 23, 2022 – 15:49

MILAN (Reuters) – Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has been in San Raffaele hospital in Milan since Thursday, a person with knowledge of the matter said on Sunday after the 85-year-old decided not to run for president.

The ANSA news agency reported earlier on Sunday that Berlusconi’s hospitalization was linked to routine medical checks.

A Berlusconi spokesman did not respond to a Reuters request for comment.

On Saturday, Berlusconi said in a statement that he had decided not to run for president until a parliamentary vote begins Monday.

Italy’s right-wing coalition had asked him to run, but his candidacy was unlikely to be successful due to difficulties in mustering the broad support traditionally needed among more than 1,000 lawmakers and regional delegates.

The four-time prime minister underwent major heart surgery in 2016 and survived prostate cancer. He has been hospitalized several times over the past year after contracting COVID-19 in 2020.

(Reporting by Elvira Pollina, editing by Giselda Vagnoni, Emelia Sithole-Matarise and Pravin Char)

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