Center-left leader Romano Prodi demanded anew that Premier Silvio Berlusconi concede defeat in Italy's tight election and apologize for claiming there had been fraud in the voting.
"He must acknowledge how things went and, I believe, apologize as well after what he said about fraud," Prodi told reporters Saturday, speaking from Bologna, where he lives. Final results are yet to be released as electoral officials examine contested ballots.
Berlusconi said earlier this week that there had been fraud in the elections, but quickly backed away from his comments.
The conservative premier made no public comment Saturday, after describing himself late Friday as a "fighter" and an "optimist." A letter from him published in Italy's main daily, Corriere della Sera, indicated he was digging in, for now.