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2 Jan, 2020 12:33

Salvini trolls Pope Francis over New Year’s hand-smack controversy (VIDEO)

Salvini trolls Pope Francis over New Year’s hand-smack controversy (VIDEO)

The head of the Italian League party, Matteo Salvini, has playfully mocked the Pope's viral New Year’s handshake faux pas with a tongue-in-cheek recreation, spreading mirth online to wrap up the festive season.

Pope Francis would clearly have rathered a different end to 2019 but was instead embroiled in a controversy, albeit minor, on December 31, when he appeared to slap away a rather overly enthusiastic fan, something for which he later apologized.

Salvini posted his own parody version of the incident on his social media channels, which has been viewed over 600,000 on Instagram alone. 

The former Italian minister of the interior appears walking nonchalantly before being accosted by an adoring but “agitated fan” (his girlfriend, Francesca Verdini). He draws back as if to strike her before gently caressing her cheek instead, as the pair burst out laughing.

Without mentioning Francis by name, Salvini was clearly making light of the much-discussed incident in St Peter’s Square. 

“So many times we lose patience. It happens to me too. I apologize for the bad example given yesterday,” the Pope said, before giving his traditional prayer from the Apostolic Palace in the iconic Vatican square.

Also on rt.com Pope Francis repeatedly SLAPS woman’s hand after she YANKS him toward her (VIDEO)

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