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New European far-right coalition named Identity and Democracy

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By Euronews
New European far-right coalition named Identity and Democracy

France’s Marine Le Pen unveiled the Identity and Democracy group in the European Parliament on Thursday, uniting eurosceptics who aim to transfer power from Brussels to capitals.

"We're not carrying over the same dynamic," Le Pen said. "The fact that the members of the ID group are now participating in governments is evidence of our new maturity."

Changing the name provided an opportunity for Le Pen to come to the European Parliament and assert herself over the faction.

The group brings together Le Pen’s National Rally and Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini’s Lega party — both of which are housed with the Europe of Nations and Freedom group — in addition to Germany’s Alternative for Germany (AfD). Nationalists from Austria, Finland, Denmark and other countries will also be part of the group.

The group will be led in the European Parliament by the Lega's fresh-faced Marco Zanni and hold 73 of the European Parliament's 751 seats, making it the fifth largest group.

However, they were unable to persuade Nigel Farage to get his Brexit Party on board.

The group will continue to press for political power to be returned to capitals, but they are scaling back on their calls for countries to exit the bloc and single currency euro for now.