Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has addressed his supporters for the first time since his hospitalization a month ago. He did so via a video message from a hospital in Milan.
The former prime minister thanked his supporters for “the support that helped him a lot to overcome a very dangerous pneumonia”. Unfortunately, the former prime minister
“See me here, for you, for the first time in a month, I’m wearing a shirt and vest,” Berlusconi, 86, said in a pre-recorded video from a hospital room in Milan last night. The images were broadcasted at the congress of his party Forza Italia.
In the 20-minute video, Berlusconi assured that his party is “the backbone of the government”. Forza Italia is a partner in the coalition with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s far-right Fratelli d’Italia. According to Berlusconi, his party is present in the coalition to “ensure that decisions are taken correctly, justly and in a balanced way”.
As founder and chairman of Forza Italia, Berlusconi had hoped to attend the congress. Ultimately, the media magnate had to drop out and address his party colleagues via a video message. The billionaire said he was ready to return to work, but doctors have not yet said when he would be allowed to leave the hospital.
Berlusconi was admitted to San Raffaele Hospital in Milan on April 5 with a lung infection. He spent a week and a half in intensive care. Following the hospitalization, the doctors confirmed that the former prime minister had leukaemia.
Berlusconi’s Forza Italia had lost much support since the party peaked between 1994 and 2011 when Berlusconi served three times as prime minister. However, the latest polls indicate that Berlusconi’s conservative formation still attracts about 7 percent of the voters, while Meloni’s Fratelli d’Italia party has almost 29 percent.