Russia has also reportedly lent money to Greece’s neofascist Golden Dawn, Italy’s Northern League and other anti-Europe parties
that her far-right Front National accepted money from a Russian bank, amid growing evidence that the Kremlin is backing anti-European parties across the continent.
Le Pen said that her party had received a loan of €9 million (£7 million) in September from the Russian-owned First Czech-Russian Bank, but insisted that the money would have no impact on her policies.
“We signed with the First [bank] who agreed and we’re very happy about it,” she said. But it is “ridiculous to suggest that gaining a loan would determine our international position,” she insisted. “These insinuations are outrageous and offensive.”
According to recent opinion polls, the National Front is now France’s most popular party.
Russian loans have also been extended to Greece’s neofascist Golden Dawn party, Belgium’s Vlaams Belang, Italy’s Northern League, Hungary’s Jobbik and the Freedom Party of Austria, The Times reports. All of these parties except Golden Dawn were invited to observe Crimea’s vote on joining Russia and all offered their support for the annexation of the south-eastern Ukrainian region.
The loans to the National Front from the Russian-owned bank occurred amid “growing evidence of a secret Kremlin