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Bush, Berlusconi hold phone talks on Iraq

Italian PM and Bush talked by phone on Monday to discuss the war in Iraq, Berlusconi's office said in a statement.

world Updated: Apr 01, 2003 01:07 IST

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and US President George W Bush talked by phone on Monday to discuss the war in Iraq, Berlusconi's office said in a statement.

"During a long telephone conversation, President Bush explained to Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi the latest developments about the situation in Iraq," the brief statement said, without offering further details.

Despite overwhelming opposition to the war from most Italians and Pope John Paul II, Berlusconi has been a strong supporter of the US strikes on Baghdad.

However, Italy has not sent its own troops to the conflict.

The talks came as the Italian government was due to answer questions on Tuesday from the country's upper house of parliament, the Senate, about the situation in Iraq.

Berlusconi also spoke Monday to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has opposed in strong terms the US-led war against Iraq.

First Published: Apr 01, 2003 01:07 IST