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Italians accuse their PM of ‘racist gesture’ for wearing body armour at State House

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has been accused of pulling a “racist gesture” when he showed up at State House, Nairobi, wearing a visible bulletproof vest.

Italian newspaper Libero conducted an online poll among its readers asking “Renzi does not trust Kenya, he puts on a bulletproof jacket? Is this a racist gesture?”

The results said that 72 per cent of those who answered voted ‘si’ (Italian for yes) while only 28 per cent voted ‘No’.

Libero has a center right-wing and liberal stance.

The Italian government has since confirmed that indeed the PM wore a bullet proof vest to State House, Nairobi due to security concerns.

However, an Italian government official told to CNN that PM Renzi wore a bullet proof vest inside State House because of a ‘tight schedule’, not because of security.

“Apparently, he didn’t have time to take it off,” said the official, who did not wish to be named.