“I don’t respect you,” Polish mayor Wojciech Bakun told the head of the far-right Lega party Matteo Salvini. What was supposed to be a visit to show support for Ukrainian refugees ended for the red-jawed Italian politician with a clumsy exit.
More than a few times Salvini’s “sorry” could not intervene when Wojciech Bacon informed him. Bacon is the mayor of the Polish city of Przemyel, near the border with Ukraine. He was clearly not happy with Salvini’s visit. “We want to go with you to a reception center on the border to show you what your friend Putin has done,” he said.
It was unacceptable to him for Salvini to come to visit his city with a pro-Putin past. To complete the humiliation, the mayor took off the shirt in the middle of the press moment with which Salvini photographed himself on Red Square in Moscow. “Putin’s Army,” says the caption to the shirt.
Salvini assumed he was coming to visit the city station in the presence of the press. Refugees from Ukraine arrived at that station. They were offered a free ride on the train. When the mayor begins his speech, Salvini begins to get nervous and walks several meters away.
When the audience pointed out to the far-right politician it was the perfect opportunity to distance himself from Putin, the press conference turned into a muddled discussion with dozens of participants. Salvini found nothing better than drip. He said afterwards that he “disapproves of war” and that the purpose of his visit was to “help refugees”.
The shirt is not the only shirt with which Salvini has expressed his admiration for Putin. In 2019, the Russian president was called “the best statesman in the world.” He has always denied allegations that his party would receive money from Russia.
“Creator. Award-winning problem solver. Music evangelist. Incurable introvert.”