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Women protest against Berlusconi

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Thousands of Italian women have turned out across the country to protest against prime minister Silvio Berlusconi (AP)

Thousands of Italian women have turned out across the country to protest against prime minister Silvio Berlusconi (AP)

Thousands of Italian women have turned out across the country to protest against prime minister Silvio Berlusconi (AP)

Thousands of Italian women have turned out across the country to protest against prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, saying his dalliances with young women humiliate their sex as a whole.

Supporters of the 74-year-old leader and media mogul have dismissed the demonstrations as strictly political.

Mr Berlusconi is being investigated for allegedly having sex with a 17-year-old nightclub dancer who says he lavished cash and jewellery on her. Both deny they had sex with each other.

Mr Berlusconi, who willingly acknowledges his fondness for pretty young women, claims he is being victimised by left-wing prosecutors who want to topple him from power.

Rome's Piazza del Popolo was packed with women of all ages, along with their children, husbands or boyfriends.

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