Marine Le Pen goes to trial over tweets on ISIS atrocities
A French judge has ordered Marine Le Pen, leader of France’s right-wing Rassemblement National party, to stand trial over gruesome images of atrocities committed by ISIS she shared on Twitter, according to The Local France.
In December 2015, the French politician sent three tweets showing the decapitated body of American reporter James Foley, a man on fire in a cage and a victim being driven over by a tank. The images were captioned “This is Daesh,” another name for ISIS.
In 2017, she was stripped of legal immunity by the European Parliament, and in February 2018 Le Pen was charged with circulating “violent messages that incite terrorism or pornography or seriously harm human dignity” that can be seen by a minor.
“This only shows French citizens what the EU is, what the European Parliament is and that it’s all part of the system that wants to stop the French people’s candidate that I am,” Le Pen said in response to being stripped of immunity, according to the site.
Le Pen refused to attend a police interview during a law enforcement investigation into the tweets, telling AFP “I am being charged for having condemned the horrors of Daesh” and that “in other countries this would have earned me a medal.”
The crime is punishable by up to three years in prison and a fine of approximately $91,000, the Local reported.
She was also ordered to undergo psychiatric testing by a district court in Nanterre, France, last year as part of the investigation, a demand she railed against on Twitter.
“I thought I had been through it all: well, no! For denouncing the horrors of Daesh (Isis) by tweets the ‘justice system’ has referred me for a psychiatric assessment. How far will they go?!” she said, as translated by TheLocal.fr.
Je croyais avoir eu droit à tout : eh bien non ! Pour avoir dénoncé les horreurs de #Daech par tweets, la « justice » me soumet à une expertise psychiatrique ! Jusqu’où vont-ils aller ?! MLP
— Marine Le Pen (@MLP_officiel) September 20, 2018
John and Diane Foley, Foley’s parents, said they were “deeply disturbed” by the photo and called for the tweet to be taken down in a statement, according to AFP and the Associated Press.
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