Berlusconi accuses Italy’s premier of plotting to win national election

Silvio Berlusconi has accused Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti of plotting with the left in his centrist alliance’s bid to win Italy’s national election in February.

“This grouping has been formed to favor the left – also the similarities with the left’s program points in this direction,” the former Italian premier told reporters in Rome on Saturday.

The 76-year-old billionaire also stated that Monti’s aim is to continue his austerity agenda of tax hikes and spending cuts.

Later in the day, Pier Ferdinando Casini, the head of the Union of Christian and Centre Democrats (UDC), which cooperates with Monti, denied the accusations.

“Our initiative was not born with the support of the Democratic Party. It has not been started with a predetermined alliance… until election day what’s important is aiming for the majority,” Casini said.

On Friday, Monti said he wanted to unite a broad coalition of factions around an agenda, which is aimed at tackling the country’s economic crisis.

On December 22, Italian President Giorgio Napolitano dissolved the parliament following Monti’s resignation.

Over the past decade, Italy has been the slowest growing economy in the eurozone single currency area.

Monti served as the European chairman of the Trilateral Commission from 2010 to 2011, was formerly a member of the Steering Committee of the Bilderberg Group, and still plays an important role in the Bilderbergers.

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