Italy president, after Berlusconi ruling, says cohesion crucial

ROME Thu Aug 1, 2013 2:52pm EDT

Italian President Giorgio Napolitano gestures as he speaks with reporters at the Quirinale palace April 24, 2013. REUTERS/Max Rossi

Italian President Giorgio Napolitano gestures as he speaks with reporters at the Quirinale palace April 24, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Max Rossi

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ROME (Reuters) - Italy's president Giorgio Napolitano, speaking after a Rome court confirmed a prison sentence against former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, urged the country to maintain its calm.

"The country needs to rediscover serenity and cohesion on vitally important institutional matters which have for too long seen it divided and unable to enact reforms," he said in a statement.

He said there had so far been a more "respectful and calm" climate than there had been in previous trials involving Berlusconi and added: "I think this is positive for everyone."

(Reporting By Philip Pullella)

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