Portuguese in France threatened by extreme nationalist graffiti

The wall of the Portuguese Club of Brie-Comte-Robert, a little town 28kms southwest of Paris, was vandalised earlier this week with extreme nationalist graffiti. Slogans including “Death to the Portuguese” and “Long live the FN” (standing for National Front, in French), were mixed with threats to “gypsies” and “foreigners” in general.

Daubed in red, the slogans were accompanied by images of the swastika, writes Diário de Notícias, and words like “Go Back Home”.

According to news reports today in Portugal, the Portuguese Club has no intention of making any complaints, and repainting of the damaged walls has already taken place.

The name of the National Front’s local representative Morgann Vanacker also appeared among the graffiti – but he has denied all knowledge of the attack, and claims he will be lodging a complaint with the authorities “because the perpetrators are involving our party, persecuting it”.

Vanacker told reporters: “We are not racists.”

José Rodrigues, president of the club, said “of course, the paintings made on our walls had to do with the elections”.

The French National Front made significant gains in the first round of regional elections, held last Sunday.

What the UK’s Guardian newspaper called “the spectacular showing” is the “highest ever performance for an anti-immigration, anti-European party” which “if it maintains the strong lead in next week’s second round, could reshape France’s political landscape”.

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