Former Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi smiles as he leaves the "Sacra Famiglia" foundation in Cesano Boscone, near Milan, Italy, Friday, May 9, 2014. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)
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Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi repeated accusations on Wednesday that he was forced out of office at the height of the euro zone crisis in 2011 as the result of a "plot" by European Union officials.Berlusconi's comments followed the publication in Italy of extracts from a new book by former U.S. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner which suggested that EU officials had approached the U.S. government with a project to force Berlusconi to resign.Berlusconi resigned in November 2011 after months of tension on financial markets caused fears that investors could refuse to buy Italian bonds, sending the euro zone's third-largest economy into default and breaking the single currency apart.On Wednesday he repeated accusations that Napolitano was in contact with Monti, the former European Commissioner appointed to lead the technocrat government that succeeded Berlusconi, well before the final crisis.
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