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Tuesday, September 26, 2023

France’s Minister Makes Racial Comments at a Colleague, Interrupts National Assembly

Grégoire de Fournas, minister for National Rally, made racist remarks against fellow minister Carlos Martens Bilongo

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Aditya Saikrishna
Aditya Saikrishna
I am 21 years old and an avid Motorsports enthusiast.

FRANCE: France’s National Assembly meeting was suspended after the minister of the National Rally party made racist comments aimed at opposition minister Carlos Martens Bilongo.

The opposing minister, Carlos Martens Bilongo, had raised the issue of migrants stranded on a boat in the Mediterranean, to which Grégoire de Fournas shouted, “go back to Africa.”

The entire assembly went quiet in shock at the minister’s comments. The opposition party demanded that the minister of Gironde, a state in France, be stripped of his position. 

According to the party, it was evident that Grégoire de Fournas had stooped down to racism and targeted his colleague with racist remarks. 

Soon after Grégoire de Fournas made the comments, the president of the National Assembly, Yaël Braun-Pivet, identified the speaker and adjourned the meeting for the day.

The political bureau of the National Assembly will come together on Friday at 2:30 p.m. local time to decide on a possible sanction against the minister.

Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne reacted quickly to the incident and said racism had no place in the country. She called for strict sanctions against Grégoire de Fournas. 

The President of France, Emmanuel Macron, responded through his entourage and said that he was offended by the intolerable remarks.

France’s ruling party refused to attend the assembly until the minister got punished severely. 

When asked by BFM TV, a French media outlet, the National Rally minister, Grégoire de Fournas, denied having made the comments in a racial context. He added that he said, “Let them go back to Africa,” referring to the migrants aboard the stranded boat. 

He mentioned that he didn’t feel it necessary to apologise to his fellow minister since his sentence was legitimate and not diabolical as his peers made it out to be.

Carlos Martens Bilongo said the elected minister racially targeted him. He added that he didn’t expect to be insulted at the National Assembly. He felt that all people of colour in the country were insulted by Grégoire de Fournas’ comments. 

Also Read: France Has Opened a Formal Investigation Against Germany’s Merck


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