Le Pen: Revoke dual nationality

FN leader argues violence after Algeria reached second round of World Cup proves immigration policy "has failed"

29 June 2014

FRANCE’S Front National leader Marine Le Pen has said that dual nationality should be revoked following riots in several French cities after Algeria’s last World Cup match on Thursday.

Speaking on Europe 1’s Le Grand Rendevous at the weekend, Ms Le Pen claimed that the violence proved “the total failure of immigration policies in our country and the refusal expressed by a number of binational citizens to assimilate”.

A total 74 people were arrested for rioting and looting offences as celebrations turned sour in several French cities - notably in Lyon, Paris, Lille and Marseille - after Algeria qualified for the knockout phase of the World Cup finals for the first time.

Echoing Norman Tebbit’s notorious 1990 “cricket test” comments - in which he claimed that that immigrants from South Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean would not be truly assimilated into the UK until they supported their new country rather than their respective homelands - Ms Le Pen argued that people holding dual nationality should support France in international tournaments.

“There is a not-insignificant number of people that are choosing Algeria over France,” Ms Le Pen said.

“You should pick: are you Algerian or French, Moroccan or French… but you cannot be both.”

But sports minister Najat Vallaud-Belkacem insisted yesterday on France 3: “The problem is not the fans, but the rioters.”

She added: “It is not a question of belonging or identity.”

She warned that anyone who commits a crime after Algeria play Germany in the last-16 match tonight “will be punished”.

It is not the first time Ms Le Pen has focused her attention on dual nationality. In 2010, she argued that it undermined republican principles.

There are nearly two million Algerians in France. Many hold dual citizenship.

Following last week’s trouble, police in cities across France are on alert today, as Algeria take on Germany tonight. Whoever wins could face Les Bleus - who are also in action tonight against Nigeria - in the quarter finals.

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