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France’s National Front fails to form eurosceptic EU bloc

© AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-06-24

French National Front leader Marine Le Pen has failed to form a far-right group in the European Parliament.

The news was confirmed by her Dutch ally Geert Wilders, who had promised with Le Pen to “destroy the monster of Brussels from within”, on Monday night.

Wilders, who heads the Netherlands’ Party for Freedom, has compared the Koran with Hitler’s “Mein Kampf” and wants the book to be banned as it is “fascist”. He also said, “Islam is not a religion, it's an ideology, the ideology of a retarded culture.”

The assembly's rules require at least 25 members, out of a total 751, from seven countries to form a group.

Le Pen and Wilders had been optimistic about getting two more parties to join their group, which already includes Belgium's far-right Vlaams Belang (VB), the Freedom Party of Austria (FPO) and Italy's Lega Nord.

But they were still two countries short when the deadline passed on Tuesday.

Shock increase in anti-EU vote

"I'm convinced that we can do it later in the year and that we will then have found MEPs from the seven necessary countries," Wilders said.

Wilders’ anti-Muslim PVV party won four seats in last month's European parliamentary elections, one down from 2009.

Other European countries saw a shock increase in the number of eurosceptic MEPs, including an unprecedented victory for Britain’s UKIP – which has refused to team up with Le Pen and Wilders because of its "prejudice and anti-Semitism”.

Wilders said he would not form a faction "at any price", specifically excluding working with Poland's Congress of the New Right party, headed by Janusz Korwin-Mikke.

Korwin-Mikke has previously stated that women should not have the vote and campaigned on a homophobic platform.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)
 

Date created : 2014-06-24

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