Berlusconi takes to TikTok to court Italian youth

STORY: Berlusconi, who brought slick American-style media messaging to Italy when he entered politics in the 1990s, kicks off his short video with a cheery, "Hi guys, here I am."

Sitting behind a desk in his trademark blue blazer and tie, the Forza Italia leader, aged 85, said he would use the platform to tell a new generation how he could make Italy into "a country that can give you new opportunities and the chance to realize your dreams."

Forza Italia is the smallest of the three main parties in a rightist alliance led by the nationalist Brothers of Italy that is on course to win the Sept. 25 election.

Berlusconi is catching up with other Italian political leaders who have taken to TikTok.

Matteo Salvini, leader of the League party that is also part of the rightist alliance, claimed "an Italian political record" audience of more than 540,000 people on his TikTok channel.