The political future of Silvio Berlusconi is being decided on by a special Italian Senate committee.
The 23 members have met today and are considering whether to expel the billionaire media tycoon from parliament over his tax fraud conviction.
A verdict could take weeks to be delivered.
The former prime minister’s lawyers have appealed to the European Court of Human Rights over an Italian law, which makes convicted politicians ineligible for parliament.
The Deputy Director of LUISS School of Government in Rome, Giovanni Orsina told euronews that he believes “it is very difficult to understand what game Berlusconi is playing because he himself doesn’t really know what kind of game he wants to play. There is a measure of irrationality, he is very angry and seriously believes he has been wronged by the judges”
Senior figures in Berlusconi’s People of Freedom party have said they will pull out of the coalition government of Prime Minister Enrico Letta if he is stripped of his seat in the Senate.
Whatever the outcome, Berlusconi would not be permitted to stand in any election if the government were to fall because of his four year jail term, which was commuted to one.
President Giorgio Napolitano has said he would be unwilling to call new elections and would seek a new coalition government.