Marine Le Pen walks out of French radio interview after 'being caught lying' in wake of Paris attacks

The Front National leader took issue with what reports described as the 'live fact-checking session'

Adam Withnall
Thursday 19 November 2015 13:32 GMT
File image: Marine Le Pen of the Front National
File image: Marine Le Pen of the Front National

The leader of France's Front National, Marine Le Pen, has stormed out of an interview on France Inter radio after she was caught out by the host.

Speaking in an appearance on France Inter radio, Ms Le Pen accused a government minister of saying it was necessary to "understand the young people who left for Syria" and said she should resign.

The controversial right-wing leader said the interior minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, and the justice minister, Christiane Taubira, were too soft and had allowed an Islamist to escape prison this week.

She claimed Ms Taubira had said we must work to “understand young people who go to Syria”, and described this as “the role of a social worker, not a minister”.

Yet France Inter presenter Patrick Cohen questioned Ms Le Pen’s “interpretation” of what the minister had said, and played back a recording where Ms Taubira could be heard actually saying it was “important to understand what makes young people leave”.

According to BFM TV, this “live fact-checking session” resulted in a tense atmosphere in the studio, and Le Pen could be heard becoming audibly agitated.

The broadcaster also questioned the original claim that a prisoner had escaped this week – suggesting Ms Le Pen may have got confused over an incident reported on Wednesday but which actually took place around a month ago.

Clearly unhappy with the way the interview was going, Ms Le Pen reportedly accused the station of acting like “a court”. She then walked out, despite the efforts of the hosts to move the conversation on.

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