Europe of Nations and Freedom

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Europe of Nations and Freedom
European parliamentary group
English abbr. ENF
French abbr. ENL
Ideology Right-wing politics[1][2][3]
Far-right politics[4][5][6][7]
Nationalism[8]
Euroscepticism[9]
Right-wing populism[10][11]
Anti-immigration[9]
European parties Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom and European Alliance for Freedom
From 15 June 2015
Chaired by Nicolas Bay
Marcel de Graaff
MEP(s)
37 / 751
Website www.enfgroup-ep.eu

Europe of Nations and Freedom (French: Europe des nations et des libertés, ENL) is a political group in the European Parliament launched on 15 June 2015. With 37 members, the group is the smallest in the European Parliament. The largest party of the group by number of MEPs is the National Front representing almost half of ENL's MEPs with 17 MEPs out of 40.

The ENF is the parliamentary group of the Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom although PVV's MEPs are members of the European Alliance for Freedom and other MEPs are without any European affiliations.

History

Following the 2014 European elections on 22–25 May 2014, the European Alliance for Freedom (EAF), comprising right-wing and far-right parties from across Europe, aimed to form a stable parliamentary group in the European Parliament prior to the start of the 8th term. A previous attempt to form a far-right group in the European parliament during the 6th term was the short-lived Identity, Tradition, Sovereignty (ITS) group in 2007.[12]

On 28 May 2014, it was announced at a press conference in Brussels that the alliance led by Marine Le Pen of the French National Front (FN) and Geert Wilders of the Dutch Party for Freedom (PVV), including Lega Nord leader Matteo Salvini, were in negotiations to form a parliamentary group.[13] On 24 June 2014, it was announced that the Le Pen/Wilders alliance had failed to gather the requisite 25 MEPs from seven EU member nations, thus starting the parliamentary term as Non-Inscrits members.[14][15] Later in 2014, the EAF was succeeded by the Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom (MENL), without the participation of the PVV.[16]

EU states with more than one ENF MEP (dark blue), one ENF MEP (blue), or no ENF MEPs (dark grey) in the 8th European Parliament.

On 15 June 2015, Marine Le Pen announced that a new group in the European Parliament would be launched the following day, set to comprise MEPs from the FN, PVV, Lega Nord, the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ), Flemish Interest (VB),[6][17][18] the Polish Congress of the New Right (KNP) and former UK Independence Party member Janice Atkinson.[19] Together with the availability of the excluded UKIP MEP, the creation of the group with representation from seven different member states was made possible by the recent side-lining of two historical but controversial figures of the far-right: Jean-Marie Le Pen was suspended by his own National Front, while Janusz Korwin-Mikke's departure from the KNP allowed Marine Le Pen and Wilders to accept the two remaining members of the party in their group, something they had rejected during the discussions held in June 2014.[20][21] Among the FN delegation, Bruno Gollnisch chose not to join in solidarity with former president Jean-Marie Le Pen, while Aymeric Chauprade, on a trip to Fiji,[20] joined a few days later.[22] One of the four seats won by the PVV was vacant at the time of the group's creation until 8 September 2015, when Auke Zijlstra replaced Hans Jansen, who had died on 5 May 2015.[23]

In July 2015, the European Parliament decided the group would earn €3 million per year from EU funds.[24] By adding up all the grants for the group as well as for the linked political party and think tank, the funds will amount to €17.5 million for the next four years of their mandate.[25]

On 15 July 2015, Romanian MEP Laurențiu Rebega left both the Conservative Party and the S&D group to join the ENF.[26] On 9 November 2015 Aymeric Chauprade left the group.[27]

Reviewing votes in the EU Parliament on resolutions critical of Russia or measures not in the Kremlin's interests (e.g., the Ukraine-EU Association Agreement), Hungary's Political Capital Institute found that future members of the ENF voted "no" in 93% of cases.[28][relevant? ]

The first convention of the ENL took place on 28 & 29 January 2016 in Milan with all the leaders of ENL's member parties along with Freedom and Direct Democracy (SPD) leader Tomio Okamura, whose party is not a member of the ENL as it has no MEPs. During this convention, each leader made a speech followed by a press conference the next day.[29]

During the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party convention on 30 April 2016, it was announced that Marcus Pretzell MEP would join the ENL group.[30] The AfD's other MEP Beatrix von Storch joined the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy (EFDD) group in March 2016, both MEPs having been expelled from the ECR group.[31]

On 2 October, 3 MEPs left the Front National and the EFDD group two days later.

Membership

The ENF group has 37 members from nine different countries.[32][33]

Country # National Party MEP EU party
Austria
2 / 18
Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ)
Freiheitliche Partei Österreichs
Obermayr, FranzFranz Obermayr EAF[34]
Mayer, GeorgGeorg Mayer
2 / 18
VilimskyHarald Vilimsky MENL[35]
KappelBarbara Kappel
Belgium
1 / 21
Flemish Interest (VB)
Vlaams Belang
Annemans, GerolfGerolf Annemans
France
17 / 74
National Front (FN)
Front National
Aliot, LouisLouis Aliot
Arnautu, Marie-ChristineMarie-Christine Arnautu
Bay, NicolasNicolas Bay
Bilde, DominiqueDominique Bilde
Boutonnet, Marie-ChristineMarie-Christine Boutonnet
BrioisSteeve Briois
Ferrand, ÉdouardÉdouard Ferrand
Goddyn, SylvieSylvie Goddyn
Jalkh, Jean-FrançoisJean-François Jalkh
Lebreton, GillesGilles Lebreton
Lechevalier, ChristelleChristelle Lechevalier
(Joined the group on 19 June 2017, replacing Marine Le Pen, who was elected MP in France on 18 June 2017)
Loiseau, PhilippePhilippe Loiseau
(Had replaced Jeanne Pothain, who resigned before sitting)[36][37]
Martin, DominiqueDominique Martin
Mélin, JoëlleJoëlle Mélin
Monot, BernardBernard Monot
Schaffhauser, Jean-LucJean-Luc Schaffhauser
Troszczynski, MylèneMylène Troszczynski
Germany
1 / 96
Alternative for Germany (AfD)
Alternative für Deutschland
PretzellMarcus Pretzell
(Joined the group on 1 May 2016)
None
Italy
5 / 73
Northern League (LN)
Lega Nord
Bizzotto, MaraMara Bizzotto MENL[35]
Borghezio, MarioMario Borghezio
Ciocca, AngeloAngelo Ciocca
(Had replaced on 7 July 2016 Gianluca Buonanno, who died on 5 June 2016)
Fontana, LorenzoLorenzo Fontana
(Had replaced on 11 July 2014 Flavio Tosi, who resigned to remain mayor of Verona)[38]
Salvini, MatteoMatteo Salvini
1 / 73
Independent (elected as M5S)[39] Marco Zanni
(Joined the group on 11 January 2017)
None
Netherlands
4 / 26
Party for Freedom (PVV)
Partij voor de Vrijheid
de Graaff, MarcelMarcel de Graaff None
Elissen, AndréAndré Elissen
(Joined the group on 13 June 2017, replacing Vicky Maeijer, who was elected MP in the Netherlands on 15 March 2017)[40]
Stuger, OlafOlaf Stuger
Zijlstra, AukeAuke Zijlstra
(Joined the group on 8 September 2015, replacing Hans Jansen, who died on 5 May 2015)[41]
Poland
1 / 51
Congress of the New Right (KNP)
Kongres Nowej Prawicy
MarusikMichał Marusik EAF[34]
1 / 51
ZoltekStanisław Żółtek None
Romania
1 / 32
Independent (elected as Conservative)[42] RebegaLaurențiu Rebega
(Joined the group on 15 July 2015)
United Kingdom
1 / 73
Independent (elected as UKIP)[43] Atkinson, JaniceJanice Atkinson

Former members

Member state Party MEPs From To Moved to
France Former National Front
Now The Free French[44]
Aymeric Chauprade 24 June 2015[22] 9 November 2015[27] Non-Inscrits
Former National Front
Now The Patriots
Mireille d'Ornano 15 June 2015 2 October 2017 EFDD
Sophie Montel
Florian Philippot

Leadership

References

  1. ^ EU's right-wing ENF faction unites to fight for 'patriotism, sovereignty and identity'. Deutsche Welle. Published 21 January 2017. Retrieved 22 January 2017.
  2. ^ Marine Le Pen hails patriotism as the policy of the future. BBC News. Published 21 January 2017. Retrieved 22 January 2017.
  3. ^ Europe’s top rightwing politicians gather in Koblenz. Financial Times. Published 21 January 2017. Retrieved 22 January 2017.
  4. ^ "France's Le Pen announces far-right bloc of anti-EU MEPs". BBC News. 16 June 2015. Retrieved 2015-07-09. 
  5. ^ Samuel, Henry; Holehouse, Matthew (16 June 2015). "Marine Le Pen forms far-Right group in European Parliament". The Telegraph. London. Retrieved 2015-07-08. 
  6. ^ a b Rettman, Andrew (15 June 2015). "Far-right parties form group in EU parliament". EU Observer. Retrieved 2015-07-09. 
  7. ^ "Far right MEPs form EU parliamentary group | The Parliament Magazine". Theparliamentmagazine.eu. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  8. ^ "Le Pen finds common cause with Europe's nationalists". BBC News. 16 June 2015. 
  9. ^ a b "Expelled UKIP MEP 'agrees to join' eurosceptic group". Daily Mail. London. 16 June 2015. 
  10. ^ Tobias Gerhard Schminke. "Instabile Rechtsfraktion im EU-Parlament – Treffpunkt Europa | europäisch, politisch, kritisch". Treffpunkteuropa.de. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  11. ^ Europe’s right-wing populist leaders to confer in Germany. The Washington Post. Published 19 January 2017. Retrieved 22 January 2017.
  12. ^ Laible, Janet (2008). Separatism and Sovereignty in the New Europe. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 215. ISBN 978-0-230-61700-1. 
  13. ^ "Le Pen party steals Farage's Italian allies". The Times. 29 May 2014. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  14. ^ "Marine Le Pen fails to form far-right bloc in European parliament | World news". The Guardian. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  15. ^ "Le Pen's Far-Right EU Parliament Alliance Fails at Start". Ibtimes.co.uk. 24 June 2014. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  16. ^ Cas Mudde. "The EAF is dead! Long live the MENL!". openDemocracy. Retrieved 29 December 2014. 
  17. ^ "France's National Front says forms group in European Parliament – Yahoo News UK". Uk.news.yahoo.com. 15 June 2015. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  18. ^ Payne, Sebastian. "France's far right forms bloc in European Parliament – POLITICO". Politico.eu. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  19. ^ Mason, Rowena. "Ex-Ukip Janice Atkinson joins Le Pen-led EU group | World news". The Guardian. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  20. ^ a b Olivier Faye; Jean-Baptiste Chastand (16 June 2015). "Marine Le Pen annonce la création d'un groupe au Parlement européen". Le Monde (in French). Retrieved 2015-06-16. 
  21. ^ "Parlement européen : le FN forme un groupe sans Jean-Marie Le Pen et Bruno Gollnisch". France Info (in French). 16 June 2015. Retrieved 2015-06-16. 
  22. ^ a b "Aymeric Chauprade rejoint le groupe de Marine Le Pen". L'Opinion. Retrieved 25 June 2015. 
  23. ^ "PVV'er Hans Jansen wist dat hij voor niets in het Europees Parlement zat". tpo.nl (in Dutch). Retrieved 2015-06-17. 
  24. ^ Payne, Sebastian (16 June 2015). "Le Pen's €3 million pot – POLITICO". Politico.eu. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  25. ^ Crisp, James (16 June 2015). "Le Pen's new EU Parliament group to scoop €17.5 million of public money". EurActiv. Retrieved 2015-11-04. 
  26. ^ "Eurodeputatul Laurenţiu Rebega pleacă de la socialişti la grupul extremiştilor Marine Le Pen şi Gianluca Buonnano. Partidul lui Tăriceanu nu se alege cu niciun reprezentant la Bruxelles". europeanul.org (in Tongan). Retrieved 2015-07-15. 
  27. ^ a b "MEP quits Front National accusing Marine Le Pen of treason". RFI. 10 November 2015. 
  28. ^ Krekó, Péter; Macaulay, Marie; Molnár, Csaba; Győri, Lóránt (3 August 2015). "Europe's New Pro-Putin Coalition: the Parties of 'No'". Political Capital Institute (Hungary). Institute of Modern Russia. 
  29. ^ [1]
  30. ^ "AfD: EU-Abgeordneter Pretzell wechselt zur Front-National-Fraktion | ZEIT ONLINE". Zeit.de. 2016-04-30. Retrieved 2016-06-25. 
  31. ^ "Europe Online". En.europeonline-magazine.eu. Retrieved 2016-06-25. 
  32. ^ "Nieuw rechts blok EU: 'Wij zijn de stem van het verzet'". RTL Nieuws (in Dutch). 16 June 2015. Retrieved 16 June 2015. 
  33. ^ "Le Pen informs about the new member". Twitter (in French). 15 July 2015. Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  34. ^ a b "Aftermath of the elections, a future for the EU or a future for Europe?". European Alliance for Freedom. Retrieved 2015-08-06. 
  35. ^ a b "National delegations". MENL. Retrieved 2015-08-06. 
  36. ^ "Minutes of the sitting of Thursday 3 July 2014". European Parliament. Retrieved 26 July 2014. 
  37. ^ "L'Orléanaise Jeanne Pothain (FN) démissionne de son mandat de députée européenne" [Orleans' Jeanne Pothain (FN) resigns her MEP seat]. La République du Centre (in French). 26 June 2014. Retrieved 26 July 2014. 
  38. ^ "La grande vittoria (politica) di Tosi". 
  39. ^ "M5S, l'europarlamentare Marco Zanni: "Con Lega e l'Enf condivido battaglia contro euro e per nuova Europa"". Ilfattoquotidiano.it. 2017-01-12. Retrieved 2017-03-17. 
  40. ^ http://www.limburger.nl/cnt/dmf20170526_00041035/wilders-bedankt-opnieuw-voor-plek-in-europees-parlement
  41. ^ "Benoeming A.J. Zijlstra tot lid van het Europees Parlement". 
  42. ^ "Diaconu denies link between PRU and European nationalists by criminal charges of Rebega". Replica (in Romanian). 17 July 2015. Retrieved 23 October 2015. 
  43. ^ Dearden, Lizzie (19 March 2015). "Ukip MEP Janice Atkinson suspended and axed as election candidate over 'financial allegations'". The Independent. Retrieved 19 March 2015. 
  44. ^ "Naissance du mouvement "Les Français libres"". YouTube (in French). 13 January 2016. Retrieved 25 January 2016. 
  45. ^ "Charter". www.enfgroup-ep.eu. Retrieved 2017-03-17. 

External links

  • "Europe of Nations and Freedom". europarl.europa.eu. European Parliament. Retrieved 2015-06-17. 
  • Official website
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