The president of the European Parliament has come beneath fireplace for praising Italian dictator Benito Mussolini.
Antonio Tajani instructed Radio 24 that Mussolini did some “constructive issues”, together with bettering Italy’s infrastructure, till “he declared conflict on the whole world, following Hitler, and till he promoted the racial legal guidelines” that restricted the rights of Jews.
Udo Bullmann, the chief of the Socialist group within the European Parliament, stated on Twitter: “How can a president of the European Parliament fail to acknowledge the character of fascism? We want swift clarification.”
Mr Tajani, who’s a member of Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia occasion, insisted his feedback had been misinterpreted.
He posted on Twitter: “Disgrace on those that manipulate what I’ve allegedly stated on fascism.
“I’ve all the time been a satisfied anti-fascist, I can’t enable anybody to counsel in any other case.
“The fascist dictatorship, racial legal guidelines and deaths it prompted are the darkest web page in Italian and European historical past.”
Italy has struggled to return to phrases with its fascist previous and the rise of populism has introduced reminders of Mussolini’s 20 years in energy till his execution in 1945.