Home News Le Pen’s party’s surge marks ‘seismic shift’ in French politics, an age of anti-Muslim hate

Le Pen’s party’s surge marks ‘seismic shift’ in French politics, an age of anti-Muslim hate

by Zahid Jadwat

Marine Le Pen’s National Rally is on the rise in France. [Picture: AP]


The rise of far-right French politician Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (RN) party puts the future of the country’s Muslim citizens in jeopardy. The party’s surge in the first round of voting marks a “seismic shift” in modern French politics, says an analyst.

Speaking in an interview on Salaamedia, French political analyst Yasser Louati noted an “explosion” of racially-toned discourse in France. He said racists were emboldened by Le Pen’s increased support.

The head of the Committee for Justice and Liberties (CJL), Louati has long worked on such issues in the European country.

“What we see right now is an explosion in racist discourse in the media and in the streets; hate crimes targeting Muslims, Blacks, Arabs. We see neo-Nazis and neo-fascists openly saying they are going to kill Blacks, Arabs, and Muslims,” he said.

He said there have been incidents where people were “chasing them [minorities] in the streets”. There have also been instances where bus drivers were attacked and youngsters were beaten.

In his view, there can only be one explanation for the outburst of racially-motivated violence.

“Those who had racist views now are encouraged to express them in public, knowing that this is their ‘moment’,” he said.

He said this was in line with a growing trend of racism spanning decades past. The only difference was that instead of being isolated incidents, these were indicative of spreading prejudice in France.

“First, they were the monopoly of the far-right. They further expanded and became acceptable and taken at face value by left-wing parties, centrist parties, and conservative parties. Marine Le Pen and her father are no longer the monopolists when it comes to this cause.”

The snap election, called by President Emmanuel Macron in the wake of the European elections, kicked off on Sunday. A second round will be held on 7 July, which Le Pen’s party hopes to win with a majority.

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