Italian justice minister linked to mafia inquiry
· Prodi forced to name man holding balance of power
· Clemente Mastella was at mob associate's wedding
John Hooper in Rome
Thursday May 18, 2006
Italy's new leader, Romano Prodi, named as his justice minister yesterday a controversial politician linked to a confessed associate of the mafia. Clemente Mastella, a former Christian Democrat from near Naples, is also known for criticising judges.
The tiny party he leads holds the balance of power in the new parliament and if Mr Prodi had failed to give him a senior job in cabinet the future of his centre-left government would have been in danger.