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Italy’s Berlusconi says he is running again for premier

Italian former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi.

AFP/Getty Images

Italian former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi.

ROME (AP) — Silvio Berlusconi says he’s running to be premier again — for the good of Italy.

The media mogul confirmed to reporters Saturday that he’ll try for a fourth term. Berlusconi quit in disgrace as premier last year after failing to save Italy from its sovereign debt crisis. He has since been convicted of tax fraud and now faces plunging poll numbers.

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He yanked support for Premier Mario Monti’s technocrat government on Thursday, increasing the prospects for early elections.

Monti calls the political crisis triggered by the loss of Berlusconi’s support ‘‘manageable’’ and says his government has rescued Italy from financial disaster.

Berlusconi says ‘‘the campaign is already on’’ and he’s running ‘‘out of a sense of responsibility’’ toward recession-plagued Italy.

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