Political rival demands Berlusconi's resignation
Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is facing calls from his most bitter political rival to resign for the good of Italy and start negotiations to form a new centre-right government.
Lower house speaker Gianfranco Fini, a co-founder of Mr Berlusconi's People of Freedom party (PDL) who was expelled from it last July, said members of his new Future and Freedom party would support a new government led by Mr Berlusconi only if the Prime Minister agreed to certain conditions.
Mr Fini told a rally for his party in central Italy that the conditions would include a new programme to help the south of the country by boosting employment and a reform of the electoral law. He said: "We need a new agenda, a new programme; the centre-right that existed when the PDL was founded does not exist any more."
If Mr Berlusconi did not agree to the conditions, Mr Fini said members of his party would resign from the government. One minister, one deputy minister and two under-secretaries are members of Mr Fini's party.
"If Berlusconi wants to show his love for the country ... the right thing to do is for him to resign, trigger a crisis and start a new phase in which the centre-right programme and agenda is quickly re-discussed and we take stock of the whole situation," Mr Fini said.
Altero Matteoli, Italy's infrastructure minister, said Mr Berlusconi had no intention of resigning.
The future of Mr Berlusconi's government has been in the balance since he expelled Mr Fini in July from the PDL party they created together in 2008 to unite the centre-right.
- 1 The truth about 'girl things': Three cheers for Heather Watson's honesty
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 5 Men behaving badly: Urinating while standing, 'manspreading' and the gendering of selfishness
Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign
Ellen DeGeneres leads Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow and Paul Bettany in revealing game of Never Have I Ever
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
Excellent Salary : Austen Lloyd: OXFORD - REGIONAL FIRM - An excellent opportu...
Super Package: Austen Lloyd: BRISTOL - SENIOR CLINICAL NEGLIGENCE - An outstan...
£15000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Fantastic opportunities are ava...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Compute Engineer is required to join a globa...