Fury as Berlusconi ally calls Rome citizens 'pigs'
A key ally of Silvio Berlusconi has caused outrage in Rome by calling its people "pigs" ahead of a crucial parliamentary vote which will test the strength of the prime minister's faltering coalition, writes Nick Squires.
Umberto Bossi, the leader of the devolutionist Northern League party, joked that the city's motto, SPQR, which dates back to ancient Rome, stands for "Sono porci questi Romani"-- Romans are pigs.
The initials, stand for "Senatus Populusque Romanus" -- the Senate and People of Rome.
Mr Bossi made the remark in Padania, a northern region where his party holds sway.
Francesco Totti (34), the captain of Roma football team, challenged Mr Bossi to repeat the remark at the Colosseum, or in front of Roma's fans, suggesting he would not escape unscathed if he did.(© Daily Telegraph, London)