National Front leader Marine Le Pen has pledged to offer the country a vote on continued membership of the European Union if she is elected President in 2017.
The MEP, who is currently leading at 33 per cent of the first round vote in the latest polling, said in a TV interview that: “The European Union is death, the death of our economy, our social welfare system and our identity,” Euractiv reports.
“My idea is to tell the French people that if they elect me [in 2017], “six months later there will be a referendum,” Ms Le Pen told Greek TV channel Mega.
She also told the Greeks they needed to get their own currency back and negotiate exit from the eurozone, rather than continue to be controlled by the European Central Bank and Germany. She said she welcomed the election of the left wing Syriza party in the elections back in January who were chosen by the voters on a mandate of renegotiation on the terms of the Greek bail out – which so far have been unsuccessful.
“[Greece’s] only solution is to negotiate an organised exit from the euro,” she said. “As long as the government tells the Greek people they can remain in the eurozone while fighting against austerity, it will at worst be lying and at best wrong.”
“The Greeks need their currency back,” Le Pen said, predicting that should Alexis Tsipras fail to secure a better deal for Greece and secure victory over the country’s creditors – specifically Germany – then he will pay for it at the polls.
Le Pen’s proposal is similar to Prime Minister David Cameron’s who said that if he is re-elected in May then he will hold a referendum in 2017, although recently he has been suggesting that it may be brought forward.
In Sunday’s local elections, the National Front finished second in the country with their highest ever vote and hope they can keep the momentum going.