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Man Attacks Italian PM, Breaks Nose and Teeth

Printer Friendly VersionPrinter Friendly VersionSend to a FriendSend to a FriendPolice in Italy say a man with a history of mental problems hit Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi in the face with a statue Sunday. Mr. Berlusconi was taken to a hospital with a broken nose, two broken teeth, and a cut lip. Italy's ANSA news agency said the prime minister told reporters that he was fine after emergency treatment. But doctors say they want to keep him in the hospital overnight for observation. Mr. Berlusconi was signing autographs and shaking hands after a rally in Milan Sunday. His attacker moved close enough to throw a small statue at the prime minister's face. Mr. Berlusconi covered his face as security agents pushed him into his car. He emerged seconds later to show the crowd that he was not seriously hurt, even with his mouth oozing blood. Police dragged away the suspect, who they say is a 42 year-old man with a history of mental problems. They have not spoken of a motive. The 73-year-old Berlusconi is refusing to call for early elections even with his popularity dropping because of sex sandals and corruption trials. Tens of thousands of Italians marched in Rome last week in what organizers called a "no Berlusconi day."