Silvio Berlusconi, the billionaire businessman and former Italian Prime Minister who founded Italy's largest media company, died on Monday, Italian media reported.
The former Prime Minister was admitted to Milano hospital on Friday. He died at the San Raffaele hospital in Milan, media sources stated.
The 86-year-old billionaire, who had been suffering from blood cancer for some time, had recently contracted a lung infection linked to chronic myelomonocytic leukaemia before being hospitalized again.
Berlusconi's Forza Italia party is party of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni's right-wing coalition, and although he himself did not have a role in government, his death is likely to destabilize Italian politics in the coming months.
Berlusconi first took office in 1994 and led four governments until 2011, despite being plagued by corruption allegations, a tax evasion conviction and a series of sex scandals. He made a political comeback in 2017.
Berlusconi's heart surgery in 2016 and years of ill health due to coronavirus in 2020 have led to the former prime minister rarely being seen in public.
Allegations of philandering have kept him in the headlines in recent years, while his influence extended beyond politics thanks to his extensive television, newspaper and sporting interests.
He is survived by his 33-year-old girlfriend, Marta Fascina, two ex-wives and five children, some of whom help run his empire, recently estimated to be worth some seven billion dollars.
While it is too soon for details of his funeral, Berlusconi built a Pharaoh-inspired marble mausoleum at his villa in Arcore, near Milan, to house his family and friends when they die.