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Marine Le Pen. Screenshot from YouTube

Marine Le Pen, persona non grata at Chirac’s funeral?

According to a Parisian weekly, the Elysée Palace was in uproar after the announcement of the presence of Marine Le Pen at Saint-Sulpice. According to the weekly, Alexis Kohler general secretary of the Élysée Palace, made "multiplied phone calls" to Jacques Chirac's son-in-law.

Published: October 2, 2019, 2:02 pm

    Paris

    According to information published by le Canard enchaîné, on Wednesday, October 2, the Elysée offered its two cents about the arrival of Marine Le Pen at the official tribute for Jacques Chirac on Monday, September 30.

    According to the weekly, a “great fuss” was made on Saturday, September 29 at the Elysée Palace after Marine Le Pen confirmed her presence at the ceremony. After this announcement Kohler made “multiple phone calls to Frédéric Salat-Baroux, the son-in-law of Chirac”, according to the weekly.

    Despite all the hysteria, it would have been impossible to prevent Marine Le Pen from paying tribute because it is not possible to formally oppose the arrival of an elected representative of the Republic, whose presence is authorized “by law”.

    A decree on public ceremonies has established the list of bodies and authorities that may be invited, and the deputies are part of it. Marine Le Pen has been a member of the Pas-de-Calais since June 2017, so she had the right to be present on such a day.

    She had been expected at Saint Sulpice after she had told France 3 television that “now is not the time for political conflict” but rather the time to “pay our respects”. She also told French news channel BFMTV it was “only natural” for her to attend Jacques Chirac’s funeral, despite their “political differences” on Saturday.

    It is allegedly a statement by the Chirac family that made the president of the National Rally change her mind, the weekly noted. “The Chirac family ended up letting it be known that it did not want to see the arrival of Marine Le Pen,” the weekly wrote. But it seems that the pressure had actually come from the Macron administration.

    “Seeing as the Chirac family has decided not to abide by republican traditions, Mme Le Pen will not be attending the ceremony,” a RN source said, confirming her absence.

    Le Pen herself later tweeted: “It is with regret that we take note of the Chirac family’s refusal to respect republican traditions, which allow all elected officials to take part in the memorial ceremony.”

    The absence of Marine Le Pen was also regretted on the side of other members of the National Rally, with Sébastien Chenu asserting that “when it comes to a national tribute, it’s good not to divide the French according to their political opinions”.

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