Home News French election season marred by racist attacks, violence

French election season marred by racist attacks, violence

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The French election campaign was fast and intense, and was also marked by incidents of racism and violence.

The far-right National Rally has been vocal in its opposition to immigration, with its leader Marine Le Pen saying it undermines what it means to be French. The left-wing coalition, which includes activists, appears to have secured the most seats in parliament, according to projections released on Sunday. Jean-Luc Mélenchon accused of inciting anti-Semitism.

French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said Friday that more than 50 people — candidates, their alternatives or supporters — had been “physically attacked” during the campaign. One of them was Prisca Thevenot, a government spokeswoman, who was putting up campaign posters in her constituency outside Paris.

Stories of racist attacks have circulated online and in the media.

A TV news program Couple supporting national rally filmed verbally abusing black neighborand told her to “go to the doghouse”.

North African television host Disclosure A racist letter he received at home. Bakeries in Avignon Burned and labeled with homophobic and racist labels.

Since launching her campaign early last month, Fatma Bouvet de la Maisonneuve, a psychiatrist who practices in the Paris suburb of Montrouge, said she has been overwhelmed by new clients, with up to two calling a day and some showing up at her office unannounced.

“These people are very scared,” said Ms. Bouvet de la Maisonneuve, whose clinic specializes in the effects of racism on mental health. “They are scared for their children. They are afraid of being attacked.”

She said her dual-national clients were frightened by the policies of the far-right National Rally party, which has announced that if elected it would restrict dual passport holders from holding sensitive positions, such as running the secret service or power plants. (Early forecasts on Sunday suggested the National Rally would fall short.)

“They are worried about their jobs,” said Ms. Bouvet de La Maisonneuve, a French-Tunisian. “Civil servants are very afraid that this law will become more stringent and apply to all classes.”

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