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Friday, 26 January, 2001, 21:45 GMT
Le Pen parliament ban lifted
Jean-Marie Le Pen
Mr Le Pen was banned from the Euro parliament last year
The European Court of First Instance has overturned the ban on the French far-right party leader Jean-Marie Le Pen taking his seat in the European Parliament.

A spokesman for the European Parliament said the original ruling had been on technical grounds, rather than on the substance of the case against him.

The ban was imposed on Mr Le Pen last October after the French Council of State upheld a sentence passed against him almost three years ago.

In April 1998, he was convicted of assaulting a French socialist candidate during a 1997 election campaign.

Mr Le Pen's National Front party has issued a statement welcoming the lifting of the ban.

Mr Le Pen was told to leave the European Parliament on October 23 by the parliament's president, Nicole Fontaine.

It is the president's order that the Luxembourg-based court has now lifted.



See also:

24 Oct 00 | Europe
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