Galeazzo Bignami, a lawmaker of rightist Brothers of Italy, was named on Monday (1 November) as junior infrastructure minister. He caused outrage after a newspaper published a photo of him with a Nazi swastika covering his left arm.
Giorgia, the prime minister, announced Bignami’s appointment during a news conference. She is also the leader of Brothers of Italy. This group traces its roots back to the post-fascist Italian Social Movement, (MSI).
Bignami, 47 years old, was elected to a second term as a member of parliament last month. Bignami has been a long-standing member of the Italian hard right, but he has also spent part of his political life in Silvio Berlusconi’s moderate Forza Italia.
In a Monday statement, he said he felt “profound shame” about the photos and strongly condemned “any form totalitarianism.” He also called Nazism and all movements related to it “the absolute sin.”
Meloni didn’t comment on the 2016 photograph, but condemned the notorious racist and anti-Jewish laws that dictator Benito Mussolini enacted in 1938. Last week she told parliament that “never felt any sympathy towards fascism“.
She stated in parliament, “I have always considered (anti-Semitic racial) 1938 the lowest point Italian history. A shame that will taint Our people forever.”
Bignami will be serving under Matteo Salvini (right-wing League party leader and deputy prime minister), as the infrastructure minister. Source: eureporter.co