( dpa ) - Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi, 68, announced Sunday that he was retiring from politics after the upcoming parliamentary elections in mid-April.
"I am finished with Italian politics and possibly also with politics in general," Prodi told Sky TG24 television.
"The world is full of opportunities and there are so many people who are awaiting help and peace," he said.
"There is always something new to build."
The centre-left government stepped down following a political crisis at the end of January.
Prodi said soon after the collapse of the government that he did not intend to stand as the main candidate for the coalition.