Monday

1st Jun 2020

Le Pen to meet allies in Prague

  • Marine Le Pen will meet like-minded politicians in Prague next week (Photo: europarl.europa.eu)

French far-right leader Marine Le Pen will be in Prague next Wednesday (6 May) to hold a speech at a conference titled “Peace and Prosperity Beyond EU” and, more importantly, to meet her allies from across Europe.

The main host of the one-day meeting is a Czech non-parliamentarian party OKS (Civic Conservative Party) which has officially established itself as an exclusive partner of the French Front National (FN) in the Czech Republic.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

A second host is one MP, a former member of a populist party Dawn and non-attached now. This means the meeting can take place in the Czech parliament.

Apart from discussing the prosperity of European states after the wished-for collapse of the EU, the event is set to boost Marine Le Pen's network.

Representatives from six to eight political parties from other EU members states are to present themselves in Prague, said both Radim Fiala, the Czech MP, and Jiri Janecek, the leader of OKS party.

“The leaders of both current allies of Marine Le Pen and possibly new partners should be here,” Fiala told this website but declined to give the names of the parties.

“We have roughly twenty foreign guests, but nobody from Russia. We wanted to keep it EU-related," said Janecek.

When asked if Hans-Christian Strache of Austria's far-right FPOe was on the list of those invited and whether he has confirmed, Janacek said only: “Wait until 6 May."

Past get-togethers indicate what Wednesday's gathering could look like.

Strache, Wilders, Philipe Claeys of Belgium's Flemish nationalist party Vlaams Belang, Janecek himself as well as Italian and Bulgarian party leaders all attended the national congress of the National Front (FN) - Le Pen's party - last November in Lyon.

The National Front's alliance with the OKS party is attracting much attention in the Czech Republic, with the main question being about what the French party sees in the minor Czech party.

OKS was established in February last year - it scored 0.14 percent of the vote in a municipal election in Prague in autumn.

There has been much speculation about Russian money and interest behind the alliance.

Janecek is known as a fervent critic of post-Maidan Ukraine and an admirer of Russia.

Meanwhile the First Czech-Russian Bank, which has a base in Moscow but a subsidiary in Prague, recently lent €9 million to the National Front.

The general conclusion among commentators is that it would be useful for Le Pen to have somebody in Prague to deal with the bank.

Jiri Janecek of OKS denied this connection.

“No Russian money, no loan involved. I haven’t been asked to do any service and I would have refused it outright if that was the case,” he says, adding that their alliance is purely ideological. “I agree with the National Front and they like our programme."

Ludovic de Danne, an advisor to Le Pen and the one in charge of the FN's foreign relations, wasn’t available for comment on the nature of ties with the Czech party.

Chemnitz neo-Nazis pose questions for Germany

UN human rights commissioner urged EU leaders to condemn violence that recalled the 1930s, but the local situation in former East Germany does not apply to the whole country.

Former Malta opposition leader fears for his life

Simon Busuttil spent 10 years as an MEP before returning to Malta to lead the opposition. He now fears for his life amid probes into high-level corruption in Malta's government.

News in Brief

  1. Orban calls EU Commission recovery plan 'absurd'
  2. ABBA's Björn new president of authors' rights federation
  3. Malta and Libya to create anti-migrant 'units'
  4. France reopening bars and parks next week
  5. EU wants more money to hedge against hard Brexit
  6. UK needs to move in negotiations, EU trade official says
  7. Germany seeks EU sanctions on Russia spy-chief
  8. EU extends sanctions against Syrian regime

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. UNESDAHow reducing sugar and calories in soft drinks makes the healthier choice the easy choice
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersGreen energy to power Nordic start after Covid-19
  3. European Sustainable Energy WeekThis year’s EU Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW) will be held digitally!
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic states are fighting to protect gender equality during corona crisis
  5. UNESDACircularity works, let’s all give it a chance
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic ministers call for post-corona synergies between economic recovery and green transition

Latest News

  1. Spain takes 'giant step' on guaranteed minimum income
  2. Vestager hits back at Lufthansa bailout criticism
  3. EU Commission aspires for treaty change on health
  4. Did Russia get Nato's cosmic-level secrets?
  5. EU Commission: Five-fold aid increase for fossil-fuel regions
  6. France opposed guidelines on EU presidency sponsorships
  7. China's post-Covid 19 'techno-nationalist' industrial policy
  8. EU Commission's €1.85trn recovery package - key points

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us