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Generation Identity: France’s direct-action, far-right youth group

The French far-right group Génération Identitaire (Generation Identity) has made headlines in recent years with its high-profile anti-migrant stunts. Three of its members are standing trial over an attempted migrant blockade in the Alps. But who are Generation Identity and what are their goals?

The group was created out of the wider far-right movement called "Les Identitaires", officially becoming a separate organisation in September 2012 when its members occupied a mosque in Poitiers in western France.

Since then, it has held a number of attention-grabbing anti-migrant operations as part of its “Defend Europe” campaign.

In 2016, the group chartered a boat, initially with the intent of impeding migrant rescue ships from operating in the Mediterranean, though it later said they were there simply to “monitor” the rescue ships’ activities.

Last winter Generation Identity members gathered in the French Alps to erect a blockade in an attempt to prevent migrants entering France from Italy.

Tthe trial of three of its members who took part in the mountain blockade began in the French city of Gap on July 11. They have been charged with impersonating government officials and could face up to a year in prison and fines of up to €15,000 ($16,800).

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