The mayor of Venice has been quoted as saying that he will try to ban Gay Pride parades in the city, provoking fury from gay rights activists.
"There will be no gay pride in my Venice," Luigi Brugnaro told La Repubblica newspaper, describing the event as farcical and kitsch.
However, he said he was not homophobic, insisting he had friends who were gay.
In the interview with La Repubblica newspaper (in Italian), Mr Brugnaro said he firmly opposed hosting the parade in Venice.
"Let them go and do it in Milan, or in front of their own homes," he was quoted as saying.
Mr Brugnaro earlier provoked controversy by withdrawing books that depicted same-sex families from Venice's nurseries and primary schools.