Italy became the latest target in Europe's financial crisis on Monday, as soaring borrowing rates intensified pressure on Italy's Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi to resign and let a new government reform the country's spendthrift ways.
Silvio Berlusconi is teetering on the brink of collapse once again, but unlike so many times before, this time he just might fall. But even if the 75-year-old media mogul resigns or gets pushed out of office this week, it doesn’t mean he’s gone for good, reports The Daily Beast.
On Monday morning, rumours swirled through Rome about his resignation, stoked by his own party members. By noon, Berlusconi denied the resignation. “The rumors of my resignation are groundless," read an English translation of the prime minister's entry - originally written in Italian - on his Facebook wall.
The opposition center-left has long demanded the resignation of Berlusconi, citing sex scandals, criminal prosecutions and legislative priorities it says are aimed at protecting his own business interests rather than those of the country.
The Daily Beast said, 'Anyone following the Berlusconi hashtag on Twitter found it hard to keep up with the denials from his own party members and the wishful thinking by his opposition.'
The prospect of financial disaster was because of Italy's huge debts and slow growth. Unlike Greece, Ireland and Portugal—the three countries that Europe has already bailed out — Italy's economy could be too large to rescue. Berlusconi's astonishing outburst came as Italy’s cost of borrowing hit a record high amid fears the cash-strapped country will go the same way as Greece, Portugal and Ireland and not be able to pay its bills.