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More insults for Italy's first black minister

Kyenge told to 'go back to Congo' by far-right group

09 May, 10:44
More insults for Italy's first black minister (ANSA) - Macerata, May 9 - Italy's first black cabinet member, Integration Minister Cecile Kyenge, received the latest volley in a barrage of racist abuse on Thursday when she was told to go back to Congo.

Italian prosecutors have opened a probe into online abuse directed at Kyenge, a doctor who was born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, since her appointment in Premier Enrico Letta's left-right government less than two weeks ago.

But this did not stop the far-right Forza Nuova party hanging a banner outside the offices of her centre-left Democratic Party (PD) in the central city of Macerata that read: "Kyenge go back to Congo".

Forza Nuova is against a proposal by PD Senator Mario Morgoni for Kyenge to be made an honorary citizen of the Marche city. As well as anonymous attacks on the Internet, the 48-year-old Kyenge was also targeted by a senior member of the the anti-migrant Northern League. League MEP Mario Borghezio called Letta's new executive a "bonga bonga government" and claimed Kyenge would seek to "impose her tribal traditions from the Congo".

An online petition has been launched calling for Borghezio to be ousted from the European Parliament.