Italian PM's Brother-In-Law And Minister Sparks Outrage By Saying Illegal Immigration Leads To 'Ethnic Replacement'

Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni's brother-in-law sparked fury among the opposition for saying that Italy’s declining birth rate and a rise in illegal immigration may result in “ethnic replacement.”

What Happened: Francesco Lollobrigida, who is the Minister of Agriculture of Italy and a prominent political ally, said, "Italians are having fewer children, so we're replacing them with someone else," reported CNN.

"Yes to helping births, no to ethnic replacement. That's not the way forward," he said.

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"The way is to build a welfare system that allows you to work and have a family, supporting young couples to find employment," he added.

Lollobrigida’s comments came after a recent report found that the European nation has one of the world's lowest birth rates, with fewer than 400,000 births in 2022.

The Italian minister, at a conference on Tuesday, was clarifying that the incentives proposed by PM Meloni to encourage childbirth did not imply that women had to stay home to raise them.

The agriculture minister's statement drew massive flak from the Italian opposition. Italy's Democratic Party head Elly Schlein called his statement "disgusting" and "reminiscent of the fascist regime of Benito Mussolini."

Schlein accused him of reverting to the mentality of the 1930s, saying his words "have a flavor of white supremacism."

Why It Matters: Meloni's Brothers of Italy party last year became the most right-wing government since Benito Mussolini’s fascist rule after her party scored a sweeping win in the country’s general elections.

Meloni's brother-in-law Lollobrigida said he was not against controlled immigration, noting his grandfather emigrated to Italy. However, he considers illegal immigration to be a menace. According to the Interior Ministry, Italy saw a record number of arrivals by sea this year, with 34,715 people arriving as of April 19.

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Photo courtesy: greghristov on Pixabay

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Posted In: NewsPoliticsGlobalGeneralBrothers of ItalyGiorgia Meloniimmigrationitalyracism
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