Silvio Berlusconi's Passing Marks the Close of a Controversial Political Dynasty

Silvio Berlusconi, Italy's former Prime Minister and billionaire media tycoon, passed away today at the age of 86.

by Faruk Imamovic
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Silvio Berlusconi's Passing Marks the Close of a Controversial Political Dynasty

Silvio Berlusconi, Italy's former Prime Minister and billionaire media tycoon, passed away today at the age of 86, reports BBC.

A High-Roller in Politics and Business

Born in Milan in 1936, Berlusconi made his mark on the world as one of the wealthiest men in Italy, boasting a fortune Forbes estimates to be worth 6.4 billion euros.

His humble beginnings saw him being raised by a middle-class family, before he transitioned into a successful career in property development. His golden touch would later extend to the media, where he founded Mediaset, Italy's largest commercial house.

In addition, his love for football led him to own the prestigious AC Milan football club from 1986 until 2017. Berlusconi's storied political career started in 1994, leading four governments until his resignation in 2011. His leadership, however, wasn't without controversy.

He faced numerous accusations of corruption, and his personal life was often the center of tabloid attention due to several sex scandals.

A Life of Triumphs and Trials

Berlusconi's resilience in the face of adversity was evident when he was diagnosed with leukemia earlier this year.

Despite the physical trials, he continued to be an influential figure in Italian politics. In 2012, his political career took a major hit when he was convicted of tax fraud. After serving a one-year sentence and fulfilling his community service obligations in a Milan apartment building, Berlusconi bounced back into the political scene.

His ban on running for office was lifted in time for the 2018 general election. His party, Forza Italia, joined forces with the League and Brothers of Italy but unfortunately failed to garner the 40% needed to take power.

Personal Life and Final Days

Berlusconi's personal life was just as colorful as his political career.

He was married twice and was known to have been involved with Francesca Pascale for seven years, before starting a relationship with Marta Fascina, a 33-year-old MP for Forza Italia. They held a "symbolic marriage" in March 2022.

He leaves behind five children. In recent years, his health became a concern. Berlusconi underwent heart surgery in 2016 and was admitted to the hospital in September 2020 due to COVID-19. He experienced long-term complications related to the virus, which impacted his final years.

Silvio Berlusconi's death marks the end of an era of Italian politics characterized by power, controversy, and resilience.

Italy
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