Embarrassing Bodies star Dr Christian Jessen has said Italian people are using the coronavirus outbreak as an excuse to have a “long siesta”, while acknowledging his comments are “a little bit racist”.
The death toll from Italy’s coronavirus outbreak passed 1,000 on Thursday (12 March). The entire country remains paralysed, with non-essential shops and businesses closed, and yesterday, Rome’s Catholic churches were ordered to close due to the pandemic – a move believed to be unprecedented in modern times.
During an interview on FUBAR Radio’s Access All Areas about the outbreak, Jessen said: “This might be a little bit racist to say this, [and] you’ll have to make apologies, but do you not think it’s a bit of an excuse?
“The Italians, any old excuse to, you know, shut down everything and stop work for a bit and have a long siesta.”