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Italians salute Mussolini on the iPhone

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An iPhone app which allows nostalgic Italians to enjoy speeches by Benito Mussolini has proved a big hit, having attracted over 6,000 downloads since it launched on 21 January.

Creator Luigi Marino claims the one hundred speeches and 20 audiovisual files available via the €0.79 application are of "documentary interest", and allow "unprejudiced analysis of what happened during those years in Italy", as Spain's El País puts it.

Marino said: "I am amazed at the amount of downloads and I am aware that there have been complaints to Apple, but as I say it is not an application in praise of Mussolini but simply a tool of history."

Indeed, the Daily Mail notes that the app's comments page featured some serious stick, including "iPhone Italia should be ashamed of themselves" and "I can't believe it. I feel sick."

One patriot, however, was moved to write: "At last, a serious application."

iPhone Italia yesterday closed the comments page and issued a statement which read: "The comments posted do not represent the views of iPhone Italia and any which expressed a political viewpoint have been removed."

Confirming it would not pull the app, the company added: "The application is not a political item but one of history and concerns a person who wrote an important page in our history." ®

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