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France's Le Pen could lose immunity, may face racism charges

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France's Le Pen could lose immunity, may face racism charges

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French National Front (FN) leader Marine Le Pen could face charges of inciting racism – after a European parliamentary committee voted to remove her immunity from prosecution.

In a 2010 speech, Le Pen made comments comparing Muslims praying in the streets to the Nazi occupation of France.

As a European Member of Parliament (MEP), Le Pen is immune from prosecution – but in a secret vote this week, the parliament’s legal affairs committee ruled that she should lose that protection.

To become final, the decision must be ratified by the full European parliament.

The removal of Le Pen’s immunity would pave the way for the French authorities to pursue a criminal case against her.