Rome

Berlusconi 'available' for televised debate with opponents

'No problem' facing off if rules are right, says ex-premier

Berlusconi 'available' for televised debate with opponents

Rome, December 20 - Ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi said on Thursday that he was "absolutely willing" to go face to face in a televised debate with other political contenders if the "rules were right". Italian elections are expected on February 24. Berlusconi said during a radio interview that he had "no problem" facing off with Premier Mario Monti and center-left Democratic Party (PD) leader Pier Luigi Bersani publicly. "I believe it is positive and a way to understand what each contender wants...I hope to face them more than once," Berlusconi said. Premier Mario Monti and his unelected government of technocrats took over from Berlusconi last November amid spiralling public debt costs in a bid to salvage Italy from a Greek-style debt crisis. Monti has yet to confirm if he will run in the upcoming elections.

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