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Northern League MEP ejected from EFD for black minister slur

03/06/2013

Eurosceptics expel Borghezio for remarks against Kyenge

Northern League MEP ejected from EFD for black minister slur

Brussels, June 3 - Mario Borghezio, a member of Italy's anti-immigrant Northern League in the European Parliament, was kicked out of the Eurosceptics' caucus on Monday for racist remarks against Italy's first black minister. The expulsion, proposed by co-chairman Nigel Farage, was approved by a majority of more than two-thirds of the Europe of Freedom and Democracy (EFD) group. Last month Borghezio publicly said he was sorry if he caused offence to Cecile Kyenge after he triggered a widespread outcry with his remarks about the integration minister. In the wake of public outrage, Borghezio suspended himself from the EFD to avoid embarrassing the League. This came after he called Premier Enrico Letta's new executive a "bonga bonga government" and claimed Kyenge would seek to "impose her tribal traditions from the Congo" on Italy. Kyenge, who was born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, has risen through the ranks of Letta's centre-left Democratic Party (PD) since she came to Italy in 1983. As many as 130,000 signatures have been collected on an online petition demanding the European Parliament force Borghezio to resign. League heavyweights have said Borghezio should not be expelled but should temper his comments.