The decision by an Italian cabinet minister to avoid tan lines by sunbathing topless has led to criticism and accusations that her choice was “provincial and exhibitionist”, according the The Local in Italy.
Education Minister Stefania Giannini, 53, was caught out when the pictures were published by local gossip magazine Chi (‘Who’) yesterday. The magazine is owned by the Berlusconi family who also control Italy’s centre-right coalition, rivals to Giannini’s group which is led by Mario Monti.
While discussion in Italy is presently centring on the subject of topless sunbathing itself, those outside may wonder what dirty tricks Silvio Berlusconi is playing on opposition politicians with his massive media empire.
Only last week Chi published photographs of 33 year old Maria Elena Boschi, a left-wing minister for ‘Relations with Parliament’ wearing a black bikini while relaxing at the beach. Boschi is a member of the left wing ‘Common Good’ group and again is a political rival of right-wing Berlusconi.
This is not the first time Chi magazine has courted controversy over the pictures it chooses to run that other periodicals might not. It shot to infamy in 1997 for publishing pictures of the dying moments of Diana, the Princess of Wales as she lay trapped in her wrecked car. Her children, the Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry later said the photographs “deeply saddened” them.
More recently the magazine printed telephoto lens pictures it had acquired on the front page of the Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge while pregnant in various states of undress.