Silvio Berlusconi admitted to intensive care days after leaving hospital

Silvio Berlusconi, 86, has been admitted to hospital. Credit: AP

Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has been admitted to intensive care due to complications from an infection, Italy's foreign minister has said.

The 86-year-old three-time leader was in the ICU at Milan’s San Raffaele hospital, the clinic where he routinely receives care, said Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani, who is also a leader of Mr Berlusconi's Forza Italia party.

Speaking from Brussels, Mr Tajani said Mr Berlusconi was admitted because of an "unresolved problem" related to a previous infection.

Mr Tajani said Mr Berlusconi was alert and speaking.

Silvio Berlusconi was prime minister four times between 1994 and 2011. Credit: AP

Mr Berlusconi has had a series of health problems in recent years, including Covid in 2020, something he called the most dangerous challenge he had ever faced.

On March 31 he tweeted that he a returned home from a stay in hospital and thanked "all those who wanted to send a thought or sign of affection in these days."

He said he was already back at work "ready and determined to commit myself as I've always done to the country I love."

Mr Berlusconi, a media mogul-turned-politician, made his latest political comeback in September general elections, winning a Senate seat a decade after being banned from holding public office over a tax fraud conviction.

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni leads a far-right coalition in Italy. Credit: AP

That election brought a hard-right-led government to power, with Berlusconi’s Forza Italia party a junior member of a government headed by Premier Giorgia Meloni.

He was prime minister four times between 1994 and 2011 and has been a giant of the Italian right for decades.

Mr Berlusconi remains at the helm of Forza Italia, the centre-right party he created when he jumped into politics in the early 1990s, though the day-to-day running of the party has been left to underlings.

Recently he has made waves with a handful of comments about his old friend Russian President Vladimir Putin, boasting that the two had exchanged birthday greetings and blaming Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for the war.

Mr Berlusconi's comments have irked the pro-Ukraine Meloni government, though just this week Mr Tajani insisted that Berlusconi is committed to a peaceful solution to the war.

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