Italy’s Berlusconi to resign as prime minister

Rome (CNN) — Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said Tuesday that he would resign after Parliament approves a new budget that includes austerity measures sought by international lenders.

“After the approval of this finance law, which has amendments for everything which Europe has asked of us and which the Eurogroup has requested, I will resign, to allow the head of state to open consultations,” he told Canale 5 television, which he owns.

He said that showing the international financial markets that Italy can reform its finances was of paramount importance.

“We have to prove the markets that we are working on it for real, and this is the first thing we have to take care of,” Berlusconi said. “Everything else, including who leads the government, is secondary at the moment. Working for the good of Italy is the important thing.”

Berlusconi’s remarks came after the president’s office said in a statement that he had agreed to step down.


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