A former member of Britain’s UKip and two far-right Polish MEPs have joined Geert Wilders’ anti-Islam PVV and France’s Front National to form an official parliamentary grouping.
The new alliance was announced by Le Pen and Wilders at a news conference on Tuesday after much media speculation about who the new members would be.
The group, named the Europe of Nations and Freedoms alliance, will be entitled to €17.5m of public cash to fund its activities, website Euractiv.com reports.
Janice Atkinson was thrown out of UKip last year after an expenses fiddle and has now joined the Europe of Nations and Freedoms alliance. She also hit the headlines in Britain for calling a Thai woman and UKip supporter a ‘ting-tong from somewhere’.
The other MEPs come from Poland’s Congress of the New Right (KNP) but it is unclear if they have formally left the party, which has four MEPs.
Efforts by Wilders to join forces with the KNP floundered last year because of the party’s controversial former leader Janusz Korwin-Mikke, who opposes gay marriage and said he would remove women’s right to vote because they are ‘not as clever as men’.
Korwin-Mikke was replaced as leader in January this year by MEP Michal Marusik.
The PVV and Front National earlier agreed to work with Austria’s FPÖ, Italy’s Lega Nord and Belgium’s Vlaams Belang.
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