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Eurosceptic group expels Italian MEP over racist comments

By Toby Vogel  -  03.06.2013 / 17:56 CET
Mario Borghezio expelled from Europe of Freedom and Democracy group.
The Eurosceptic Europe of Freedom and Democracy group in the European Parliament has expelled Mario Borghezio, an Italian from the Lega Nord, for racist comments he made about Italy's centre-left minister for integration, Congolese-born Cecile Kyenge.  

Borghezio had been suspended by the EFD on 22 May, and the group expelled him for good today (3 June) with more than the required two-thirds majority.  

Nigel Farage, a UK MEP who is the group's co-chair, said that he had threatened to take UKIP out of the group unless it expelled Borghezio.  

Farage described Borghezio's comments as “repugnant”. “We have sent out an unmistakable signal that racist comments are unacceptable,” he said.  

Borghezio was close to being expelled from the EFD once before, when he blamed Norway's multi-racial society for a killing spree by Anders Breivik, a far-right extremist, that left 77 people dead. His comments at the time were defended by Francesco Speroni, co-chair of the EFD.  

Borghezio is one of ten Italian MEPs in the EFD; the Italian delegation is, together with the ten MEPs from the UK Independence Party, the biggest delegation in the EFD.
© 2014 European Voice. All rights reserved.

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