Berlusconi in trouble over use of bad word

Tuesday, April 4, 2006

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has found himself under fire for using the word "coglioni" to describe his opponents during the run-up to the general election in Italy. Roughly translating to "idiot", "cretin", or "fool" in English, it is Italian slang for "testicles", it is as rude as the term "prick-head".

Romano Prodi, former European Union Commission President and opponent of Berlusconi, was quick to criticize his use of the term, stating, "With all the respect I have for (Berlusconi's) voters I would never use that anatomical term we heard today used about us."

Berlusconi later defended himself, stating that his comments were supposed to be "ironic" and that his opponents were manipulating what he said.