Rome

Kyenge says insults, threats 'not worthy' of our Italy

Italian integration minister reacts to bloody mannequins in Rome

Kyenge says insults, threats 'not worthy' of our Italy

Rome, September 5 - Integration Minister Cecile Kyenge on Thursday responded to the latest in a series of racist provocations against her, saying they were not worthy of Italy. Italy's first black cabinet minister hit back after mannequins that appeared to be smeared with blood were laid out early Wednesday morning in front of Rome municipal buildings as a threat against her. ''Insults, provocations, threats beyond imagination are slipping dangerously towards a sad routine is not worthy of our Italy,'' Kyenge said via her Twitter account. In yet another in a long series of racist and abusive attacks against Kyenge, who is Congo-born, members of the far-right Forza Nuova (FN) movement set out the mannequins to protest the minister's involvement in a debate in Ostia, a sea-side suburb of Rome. One of the FN leaders, Pablo De Luca, said the protest was aimed at Kyenge's proposal to extend citizenship to Italian-born children of migrants. Kyenge has come under intense pressure, bearing the brunt of a relentless wave of anti-immigrant and racist sentiments over her stand on immigration. One of the latest was a post by an anti-immigrant former political activist on social network site Facebook suggesting ''someone kill her''. In August, officials in Vicenza are upset by a message scrawled in large handwriting on a garage door that read: ''Kyenge-orangutan'' accompanied by symbols that looked like swastikas. The message may have been a reference to a Senator from the anti-immigrant Northern League who compared Kyenge to an orangutan.

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