Marine Le Pen: we reject diplomacy of sanctions and blackmail

French right-wing presidential hopeful Marine Le Pen criticized the anti-Russian sanctions and vowed to fight against 'black lists', while visiting Moscow.

"As for the sanctions and my attitude towards them, you know that we have always opposed the sanctions. I believe they are unfair and silly, to say the least," Le Pen said at the meeting with the Russian State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin.

"I have always pressed for the abolition of sanctions, which I regard as counter-productive. I think that prohibiting lawmakers to talk with each other is an abuse of democratic rights. I hope I will be able to defend the stance, according to which we would be able to cancel the 'black lists,' at least in France," she noted.

"We reject the diplomacy of threats, the diplomacy of sanctions, the diplomacy of blackmail that the European Union has been using increasingly often, not only against Russia, but also against its own members," TASS cited the French politician as saying.

She also supported Russian efforts in the fight against terrorism.

"I try to promote fight against terrorism on all available levels. France is paying a great price because of terrorism. I favor Russia's proper participation in the fight against terrorism," Sputnik cited Le Pen as saying.

The deputy dean of the Faculty of Global Economics and International Affairs of the Higher School of Economics of the National Research University, Andrei Suzdaltsev, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, said that Le Pen's visit shows that Russia is an important factor in the internal political life of the EU in general and France in particular. "The Russian theme is often used as a weapon in the struggle between each other. Of course, Le Pen wants to use Vladimir Putin's authority in her election campaign," he clarified.

The expert described the French politician's visit to Moscow as a strong move in the election campaign on her part, which will strengthen her support by voters. "Now Marin Le Pen and Francois Fillon have competed for that part of the French electorate, which is focused on improving relations with Russia, in this case, this electorate will not be expanded, as Fillon and Le Pen are trying to divide it," Andrei Suzdaltsev explained.

Deputy director of the Institute of Political Studies, Daria Grevtsova, in turn, noted that Marin Le Pen has a good chance of winning the elections.

Nevertheless, according to the political scientist, Le Pen's visit to Russia can cause a mixed reaction among the French society.

"On the one hand, Marin Le Pen shows that she can contact such a difficult state as Russia, which is very important for European politicians now, as many people say that Russia is a very big threat to the world. And if the presidential candidate has started building relations with Russia even before he became head of state, many French citizens, perhaps, will take it positively," Grevtsova specified.

The second scenario takes into account the ambiguous attitude towards Russia at the level of the parliament. "Accordingly, elites can attack Marin Le Pen for visiting Russia and prove that she is a dangerous candidate," the deputy director of the Institute of Political Studies warned.

Given the fact that that the population of France has a very positive attitude towards Russia, most likely, the visit will play in favor of Le Pen, therefore, she decided to arrive in Russia and negotiate," Daria Grevtsova concluded.

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