Mercoledì, 19 Settembre 2018
ROME

Berlusconi denies saying bribes part of overseas business

English
© ANSA

Rome, February 15 - Ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi on
Friday denied saying companies budgeted for bribes as a standard
practice to land international contracts.
"I never used the word bribes," Berlusconi said a day after
his reported comments on deal sweeteners sparked a firestorm of
criticism amid a probe into alleged corruption in an Indian
12-helicopter contract with Italian defence giant Finmeccanica.
Bribes "are a crime and must be avoided," he said, while
reiterating that the competitors of Finmeccanica and fuels group
Eni were "rubbing their hands with glee" because of Italian
prosecutors' probes into alleged kickbacks.
The ex-premier has contended that prosecutors are "killing"
Italian business with their probes.
The row continued Friday with outgoing Premier Mario Monti
claiming Italy had fallen into "ridicule" under Berlusconi and
citing his predecessor's failure to pass an anti-corruption law.
Monti also called Berlusconi a "buffoon" for claiming he had
left Italy in good financial order when he was forced to stand
down in favour of the former European commissioner at the height
of the euro crisis in November 2011.
photo: Berlusconi wih girlfriend Francesca Pascale

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