Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Cameroon's Constitutional Court rejects last petition for re-run

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Music stars, French art and a dead cat's renaissance

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Khashoggi Affair: Evidence mounts against Saudi Crown Prince

Read more

#TECH 24

Next stop space: Japanese company constructing nanotube 'space lift'

Read more

#THE 51%

The Gender Divide: Record number of women running in U.S. midterms

Read more

REPORTERS

Reporters: Brexit, a sea of uncertainty for fishermen

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

Fishing in France's Grau du Roi harbour, a family tradition

Read more

FOCUS

French education reforms under tight scrutiny

Read more

ENCORE!

FIAC 2018: Paris's one-stop shop for Contemporary Art collectors

Read more

France

Backtracking, Le Pen meets Bannon and states she is open to closer ties

© Philippe Huguen, AFP | Marine Le Pen and former US President advisor Steve Bannon at the Front National party annual congress, on March 10, 2018 in Lille, France.

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2018-10-13

Marine Le Pen, the French far-right leader, has met with former White House strategist Steve Bannon and signaled her interest in his project to help European populist parties.

Louis Aliot, a vice president of Le Pen’s National Rally party who is also her companion, said Friday on BFMTV station that she met with Bannon a day earlier in Paris.

According to Aliot, Bannon wants to provide “technical assistance” for nationalist parties ahead of next year’s European elections but that he “doesn’t want to play a (political) role.”

Two years on from helping to mastermind Donald Trump’s successful campaign to become U.S. president, Bannon has his sights set on Europe and he is planning a foundation, called The Movement, to boost far-right parties.

“We’re not going to say ‘no’,” Aliot said with regard to getting help.

Le Pen’s apparent interest in working with Bannon stands in marked contrast to comments earlier this week when she said that only European voices should “shape the political forces ... to save Europe.”

Meanwhile, Le Pen’s legal situation grew murkier on Friday as investigative judges upped preliminary charges against her over the alleged misuse of European Union funds by her and her party.

She is a suspect in a case over payments to parliamentary assistants in the EU parliament who reportedly worked elsewhere, including at her party headquarters.

Le Pen stepped down from her post as a European parliamentary deputy to become a French lawmaker after last year’s legislative elections, but remains shadowed by the case in which some 15 people have been placed under investigation, including Aliot.

On Friday, a judicial official said Le Pen was now being charged with misappropriation of public funds rather than breach of trust. The official wasn’t authorized to speak publicly and asked for anonymity.

Le Pen has other legal issues to contend with, one notable one with regard to her posting of photos on Twitter in December 2015 that showed executions by IS extremists. She was handed preliminary charges in March for distribution of violent images. Le Pen posted the images after the November 2015 Paris attacks by IS that killed 130 people.

Le Pen said Friday that an investigation has also been opened over her September Twitter post of a court document ordering she submit to a psychiatric exam in the case.

“This judicial harassment is becoming terrifying!” she tweeted Friday.

(AP)

Date created : 2018-10-13

  • ITALY - FRANCE

    Le Pen and Salvini vow to storm Brussels ‘bunker’ in EU elections

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    EU court confirms Marine Le Pen must repay €300,000 to European Parliament

    Read more

  • EUROPEAN UNION - USA

    Will Europe’s nationalists welcome Bannon’s attempt to unite the right?

    Read more

COMMENT(S)