Italian lawmaker under fire for racist remark
Tue Jul 16, 2013 5:45AM
Italy’s Deputy Senate Speaker has come under fire for making racist remarks. Opposition politician, Roberto Calderoli, has said the minister for integration and the first ever black cabinet member, reminds him of QUOTE an orangutan.Italy's unprecedented left-right government continues to make the headlines for all the wrong reasons. The most recent institutional mishap occurred when the vice-president of the Senate, Northern League Party's Roberto Calderoli said Integration minister looks like an orangutan. Congo-born Cecile Kyenge is Italy's first black minister and has already been the target of many Northern League Party After his offensive remarks, two-time former minister Calderoli said he has no intention of resigning, offering only a qualified apology to Integration Minister Kyenge. Italy's Premier Enrico Letta called Calderoli's comments unacceptable, beyond every limit and expressed his support of Kyenge. Minister Kyenge has been the subject of racist abuse, mostly from the anti-immigrant Northern League party and far-right groups, since her appointment last March. Kynege has been pushing to ease immigration laws in Italy and for children born to migrants in the country to be automatically granted Italian citizenship. On Monday evening the Democratic Party organized a sit-in to pressure Senator Calderoli into resigning. An official complaint against the deputy Senate speaker was also filed with Italy's anti-racial discrimination body UNAR.