Marine Le Pen Calls for Ban on Turkish Rallies in France
French Front National presidential candidate Marine Le Pen has called for a total ban on Turkish rallies in France following the Turkish riots in the Netherlands over the weekend.
On Saturday, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu had his plane turned away and Family Minister Fatma Betul Sayan Kaya was blocked from entering the Turkish consulate in Rotterdam after she attempted to circumvent the flight restriction and cross the border by car. Blocking the Turkish ministers fueled a large and angry response from both the Turkish government in Ankara and ethnic Turks in the Netherlands.Among the politicians who have condemned Turkey has been Front National leader Marine Le Pen who took to Twitter to declare France should not host any Turkish rallies.
“Why do we have to tolerate the remarks on our soil that other democracies have refused?” Le Pen tweeted, adding: “No Turkish election campaign in France.”
The Turkish rallies across European countries are part of a campaign to rally support for an upcoming constitutional referendum that would eliminate the position of prime minister in Turkey and expand President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s powers.
Le Pen’s ally in the Netherlands Geert Wilders, who is running for prime minister in Wednesday’s election, has also been vocal in his opposition to the Turkish politicians who sought to campaign in his country. Mr. Wilders released a video over the weekend in English directly aimed at the Turkish government who he said were not welcome in the Netherlands.“Your government is fooling you into believing that one day you will become a member of the European Union. Well, forget it,” he said adding, “you are no Europeans and you will never be.”
Calling Presiden Erdoğan a “dangerous Islamist”, Wilders concluded: “We do not want more, but less Islam. So Turkey, stay away from us.”
Ms. Le Pen is still topping polls for the first round of the French presidential elections due to be held on 23 April. A key demographic coming out for the FN leader are young people. A poll has revealed that up to a quarter of the young voters in France support Le Pen and her anti-mass migration policies.
Along with being tough on immigration, Le Pen has made shockwaves by declaring she will seek to get France out of the EU and the euro currency. Early Monday morning, Le Pen spoke on French television outlining her euro policies saying: “I am the candidate to defend the interests of the French people, not the banks!”
While she is expected to make it to the second round of the presidential election on 7 May, Le Pen’s main rival Emmanuel Macron is still polling ahead of her in the second round. Macron has recently accused Russia and the Russian government of trying to “hack” his campaign in favour of Le Pen, though offered no evidence for his claims.