D’Alia, a centrist who serves as Letta’s public administration minister, told Sky TG24 that Calderoli’s comments evoked the kind of racism of the Ku Klux Klan, the U.S.-based white supremacist movement.
Italian media quoted Kyenge as saying she had nothing to say to Calderoli.
Last month, Kyenge, who has lived in Italy since 1983, received death threats before she visited the northern region that is Calderoli’s party base. The xenophobic Northern League expelled a local politician after she suggested on Facebook that someone should rape Kyenge so she “can understand what victims of atrocious crimes feel.” The League’s leaders blame immigrants for violent crime in Italy.
Kyenge has in the past said that such racism is really directed at all Italians, not just her.
Immigration is a relatively new phenomenon in Italy, where past centuries saw many of its own citizens leave in search of work in North and South America and Australia.