Less than three months before the elections in France, National Front’s Nicolas Bay visits Israel. With the Israeli government boycotting his party, a middleman managed to get him meetings with senior officials.
Jan 27, 2017
France’s National Front is neither anti-Semitic nor racist, but merely wants to ensure the country’s security and preserve its identity, just like Israel or the Trump administration in America, the secretary general of the far-right party claimed in an interview with Haaretz on Thursday.
Nicolas Bay, speaking on the last day of his three-day visit to Israel, said the party was extending its hand to Israel and voiced hope that the Israeli government would end its policy of boycotting the National Front. With three months to go until France’s presidential election, Marine Le Pen, the party’s leader, is currently one of the front-runners in the race.
Many people in France, Israel and other Western countries consider the National Front to be nationalist, racist, xenophobic and Islamophobic. In addition, both the Israeli Foreign Ministry and the French Jewish community say that many of the party’s activists, including some in senior positions, hold anti-Semitic views.
Consequently, the government’s declared policy is to boycott the party, and all cabinet ministers and official Israeli representatives overseas are instructed not to have any contact with National Front officials. The French Jewish community has adopted a similar policy.