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Italian PM released from hospital, shows resilience after attack
Latest Updated at 2009-December-18 10:15:58
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Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi was released from hospital on Thursday (Dec 17)聽and will spend the initial part of his recovery at his villa outside Milan.

The 73-year-old premier was hospitalized Sunday evening after he was hit in the face with a souvenir replica of Milan's Dome thrown by a 42-year-old man with mental health problems.

Berlusconi suffered a broken nose, two broken teeth and facial abrasions in the attack which took place after a political rally. His personal doctor said a couple of days ago that his conditions were critical, due to the pain provoked by the injuries and the repeated antibiotic treatment undertaken.

However, on Thursday the doctor said the premier had finally spent a "peaceful and painless" night in hospital.

On his way out, Berlusconi waved to well-wishers and the press from the car taking him home from the hospital. A bandage covered the left side of his face, including his nose and upper lip.

In a statement issued by his entourage, Berlusconi showed optimism and gratitude for all the support people had given him. He said "I will remember two things about this experience: the hate shown by a few and the love demonstrated by many, many Italians."

"To both I make the same promise: we will push forward with even greater strength and determination along the road to freedom. We owe it to our people, we owe it to our democracy in which neither the violence of stones nor the even worse one of words will prevail," he added.

Members of his staff and his doctor assured that Berlusconi was strongly willing to continue his political and governmental agenda, but that rest now was necessary and the Christmas festivities would be of help.

Berlusconi thanked the opposition as well for the solidarity demonstrated. "Over these past days I have been given support by some opposition political leaders. If what happened leads to a greater awareness on the need for more civil and honest language in political dialogue, then this pain will not have been in vain," he said.

The premier's attacker, Massimo Tartaglia, still in jail, confessed on Tuesday that he had been influenced to the assault by the political tensions and the campaign recently launched against Berlusconi by the opposition. The police is keeping him behind bars because of the risk he may repeat such aggressive acts. The attacker pledged forgiveness.

Institutional and political parties' leaders in past days expressed their solidarity to the premier, adding that there was the need to "tune-out" contrasts and recover a peaceful dialogue.

Since Sunday's attack, thousands of supporters and fans wrote Berlusconi emails wishing him a rapid convalescence.

An enormous banner read "Welcome back home" greeted the premier upon arriving at his house. Several messages were posted along the villa's gates by ordinary people.

Although Berlusconi will spend the first part of his convalescence, which doctors hope will be at least two weeks, in his Milan villa, the Swiss press reported on Thursday that he will go to a private clinic near Lugano, in the Italian Ticino Canton in Switzerland, for cosmetic surgery to erase traces of Sunday's attack.

Editor: 寮犺幑

By: Source: China View website

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