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France dissolves far-right group Generation Identity

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Supporters of the group Generation Identity at a protest in Paris
Supporters of the group Generation Identity at a protest in Paris   -   Copyright  AP Photo
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The French government has dissolved the far-right group Generation Identity, interior minister Gérald Darmanin announced.

He said in a tweet the association "incites discrimination, hatred and violence".

The Lyon-based group had been at the centre of a number of controversies, including a 2017 “Defend Europe” mission on the Mediterranean Sea in which it chartered an “anti-migrant ship”.

It went through several legal battles, before being officially dissolved on Wednesday.

"This association and some of its activists must be regarded as promoting hate speech inciting discrimination or violence against individuals because of their origin, race and religion," he said in the dissolution decree.

It was also accused of having a "military form and organisation", thus having the "character of a private militia" the decree continued.

Last month the group's leader told AP it would fight to the end in court to retain its right to operate, and if dissolved "the militants will still be there".

Clement Gandelin insisted the group had the evidence it needed to refute the allegations against it.

The looming dissolution order led to a small protest in the French capital Paris.

Darmanin noted in the decree the group had links with "ultra-right groups from which (GI) receives logistical support", noting that it received donations from Brenton Tarrant, the terrorist behind the 2019 mosque massacres in Christchurch, New Zealand.

The interior ministry has been targeting extremist groups in recent months, dissolving three movements associated with the Islamist movement in the wake of the beheading of school teacher Samuel Paty in October 2020.