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Former Italian minister wins opposition leadership

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Former Italian minister wins opposition leadership

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Italy’s opposition Democratic Party has elected the former economics minister Pier Luigi Bersani as its new leader. In a poll in which anyone over the age of 16 could vote, Bersani was chosen to rejuvenate the Democrats.

Determined to move away from the cult of personality for which Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is so often criticised, the new opposition leader said he was not a one-man party and would rely on a collective effort. It certainly took that to get elected. More than two-and-a-half million voters turned out for the poll. Bersani was the clear favourite to win. He is regarded as the most traditionally left-wing of the three candidates but he is also reportedly more open than his rivals to forging alliances with other opposition parties.