Italy to name airport after Berlusconi

Estimated read time 3 min read

Milan’s biggest airport will be renamed to honor the late prime minister, the government has announced

Italy is set to rename Milan Malpensa Airport after the country’s former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini has announced.

Berlusconi, who was born in the country’s financial capital, died last year aged 86. He led four governments at the helm of the Forza Italia party that he founded in 1994.

“Good news: Milan Malpensa Airport will be named after Silvio Berlusconi,” Salvini, who also serves as the country’s minister for infrastructure and transport, posted on X (formerly Twitter) on Friday, along with a photo of the late politician and Malpensa airport.

He said the board of directors of the country’s National Civil Aviation Authority ENAC approved a request filed a year ago by officials from the Lombardy region where the airport is based.

Una bella notizia: l’aeroporto di Milano Malpensa sarà intitolato a Silvio Berlusconi.
Proprio oggi il consiglio di amministrazione dell’Enac (Ente nazionale per l’aviazione civile) ha approvato la richiesta fatta da Regione Lombardia un anno fa.

La decisione finale spetta al…

— Matteo Salvini (@matteosalvinimi) July 5, 2024

“The final decision rests with the transport minister, and I am ready to put the signature, with pride and emotion, in the memory of my friend Silvio, a great entrepreneur, a great Milanese and a great Italian,” Salvini concluded. “He is always with us.”

The Deputy prime minister hasn’t revealed when the airport, which handles 22 million passengers annually, will officially be renamed.

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Berlusconi, who once described himself as the “Jesus Christ of politics” and compared himself to Napoleon Bonaparte, went down in history as a controversial political figure who was rarely out of the headlines, even after he retired from politics.

A prominent media tycoon, Berlusconi founded the Mediaset television group and owned AC Milan football club between 1986 and 2017.

The billionaire faced criminal trials 30 times during his political and business career for alleged offenses ranging from abuse of office, defamation, and links to the mafia. But only one case stuck – a 2012 conviction for tax evasion in a deal involving television rights.

The politician was barred from holding public office in 2013 after being sentenced to four years in prison for tax fraud. The ban was lifted in 2018, and he became a member of the European Parliament a year later.

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