London: Silvio Berlusconi, the embattled Prime Minister of Italy, is at the centre of a fresh controversy, this time for allegedly making a crude joke about the Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel, during a taped phone call.
The Italian Prime Minister, 74, is accused of insulting his fellow European leader during a conversation with a newspaper editor.
It has been suggested that, in a phone call in early July, Mr Berlusconi referred to 57-year-old Mrs Merkel as ‘an un****able fat ****’, reports the Daily Mail.
The alleged remarks were picked up by investigators probing a 660,000-pound blackmail plot against the Italian premier.
Yesterday the news moved to Germany where the country’s best-selling paper Bild ran the story under the headline, ‘Did Berlusconi insult our Chancellor Merkel?’
Mr Berlusconi’s spokesman last night said they had no comment. Il Giornale, the newspaper owned by his family, described the allegation as ‘gossip’.
Berlusconi is currently involved in four trials, including one for having sex with an underage prostitute.