The partner of Giorgia Meloni, the Italian prime minister, has denied victim blaming after seeming to suggest women could avoid being raped by not getting drunk.
TV presenter Andrea Giambruno, who hosts the Diario del giorno, or Daily Diary, on the Rete 4 commercial station, was commenting on the gang rape of a young woman in the Sicilian capital, Palermo.
Mr Giambruno said on his show on Monday: “If you go dancing, you have every right to get drunk, there shouldn’t be any kind of misunderstanding and any kind of problem.
“But if you avoid getting drunk and losing your senses, you might also avoid running into certain problems and coming across a wolf.”
His comments were condemned by, among others, opposition politician, Cecilia D’Elia, a Democratic Party senator.
She told him boys “should be educated to show respect, rather than girls taught to be careful.
“Teach them (men) the value of consent, rather than girls to be wary,” she said.
Accusing his critics of creating a “surreal” controversy, he told Corriere della Sera on Wednesday he “didn’t say that men are free to rape women who are drunk.
“Some politicians are jumping on a false headline and calling for my suspension, but for what reason? For having told young people not to take drugs?”
Ms Meloni, who has a young daughter with Mr Giambruno, has not commented on the situation.
It is not the first time that Mr Giambruno’s comments have caused a stir.
Last month, he told the German Health Minister to “stay in the Black Forest”, after Karl Lauterbach questioned whether tourism in southern Europe was viable in the midst of the summer’s intense heat.