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The Identity and Democracy Party (French: Identité et démocratie Parti), abbreviated to ID Party and formerly known as the Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom, is an alliance of European political parties founded in 2014. All of the member parties are Eurosceptic. Its political group in the European Parliament was Europe of Nations and Freedom, which was succeeded in 2019 by Identity and Democracy.

Identity and Democracy Party
PresidentGerolf Annemans
Founded2014 (2014)
Think tankFoundation for a Europe of Nations and Freedom
IdeologyNationalism[1]
National conservatism
Social conservatism
Economic nationalism
Right-wing populism[1]
Souverainism
Hard Euroscepticism
Anti-immigration
Political positionRight-wing to far-right
European Parliament groupIdentity and Democracy
European Parliament
56 / 751
European Lower Houses
219 / 2,377
European Upper Houses
86 / 1,180
Website
www.menleuropa.eu

Contents

HistoryEdit

 
Party logo from 2014-2019.

In the aftermath of the 2014 European Parliament election, parties affiliated with the European Alliance for Freedom unsuccessfully attempted to form a political group in the European Parliament.[2][3][4]

Later in 2014, they decided to create a new European-level structure, which became the Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom. The Dutch Party for Freedom (PVV) chose not to participate in this pan-European party, as it declined to be funded by the European Union.[5] The Polish Congress of the New Right (KNP), initially claimed that it would be part of the new alliance, but was accused in a press release by the French National Rally of spreading false claims in the Polish and Austrian media.[6] Ultimately the KNP took part in the creation of the party's new parliamentary group as its former controversial leader Janusz Korwin-Mikke was evicted from the party to be replaced by Michal Marusik.

It was recognised by the European Parliament (EP) in 2015. Its maximum grant by the EP for this year is €1,170,746[7] plus €621,677 for its affiliated political foundation, the Fondation pour une Europe des Nations et des Libertés.[8]

On 16 June 2015, the Europe of Nations and Freedom parliamentary group was created in the European Parliament with members of the MENL (RN, FPÖ, LN, VB) as well as the PVV, Poland's KNP and a former member of UKIP, Janice Atkinson.

The 1st congress of the movement was held on 28 June 2015 in Perpignan, France gathering some MEPs from the National Rally as well as a few of its local & national representatives members; the objective of this meeting was mainly about making the 1st year of action of the National Rally's MEPs in review.[9]

On 15 September 2015, the Flemish Vlaams Belang (VB) and the movement organised a colloquium dealing with sovereignty which took place in the Flemish Parliament with VB's leader Tom Van Grieken, MEP Gerolf Annemans, VB's member Barbara Pas and National Rally's leader Marine Le Pen.[10] All of the Flemish parties approved Marine Le Pen's visit at the Flemish Parliament although the speaker of the Flemish Parliament Jan Peumans (N-VA) decided not to be part of this colloquium.[11]

On 24 October 2015, MENL's leader and vice-president of the National Rally Louis Aliot met the current president of Brothers of Italy, Giorgia Meloni in Trieste for a conference on immigration.[12]

Marine Le Pen praised SVP's victory during the 2015 Swiss election although the Swiss party does not have official links with the movement.[13] The movement also launched an anti-immigration campaign in 2015 just like the SVP's campaign during Swiss referendum on immigration in 2014.

On 21 November 2015, MENL's think thank "Foundation for a Europe of Nations and Freedom" organised a colloquium ("L'euro, un échec inéluctable?") dealing with Euro and how it might be an inescapable failure. Jacques Sapir took part in this colloquium among others. The FENF, chaired by Gerolf Annemans, organised another colloquium on 2 April 2016 in Paris dealing with union representation and the development of professional organisations in France.[14]

The third colloquium of the movement took place on 4 March 2016 in the Flemish Parliament with VB's leader Tom Van Grieken and PVV's leader Geert Wilders. This colloquium entitled "Freedom" ("Vrijheid") dealt with liberties in Europe and how they would be threatened by immigration from "countries with cultures which are fundamentally different [from the European one]".[15]

The movement's member parties and allies met in July 2016 in Vienna, an event hosted by Austria's FPÖ. The French National Rally, Matteo Salvini's Northern League, the AfD, Belgium's Vlaams Belang, the Dutch Party for Freedom were present among other independent politicians and smaller European parties.[16]

According to Politico, the movement owed in 2016 the European Parliament €535,818. The reasons given by Politico were the forbidden use of European grants by the MENL party to finance national political parties and referendum campaigns.[17] The party strongly denied these allegations by saying that they just had to give the unused EU funds back to the European Parliament.[18]

in February 2019, the party We Are Family (Slovakia) joined the Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom party.

On 25 April 2019, the Conservative People's Party of Estonia officially joined the group.

In 2019 the party re-branded to the Identity and Democracy Party as the European political party for the Identity and Democracy Group in the Ninth European Parliament.

Member partiesEdit

The following national delegations are part of the ID Party:[19][20]

Country Party Leader Political group
in Ninth European Parliament
European Parliament National lower houses Government
  Austria Freedom Party of Austria
Freiheitliche Partei Österreichs (FPÖ)
Norbert Hofer (acting) Identity and Democracy
3 / 18
51 / 183
Opposition
  Belgium Flemish Interest
Vlaams Belang (VB)
Tom Van Grieken Identity and Democracy
3 / 21
18 / 87
Opposition
  Bulgaria Will
Воля (Volya)
Veselin Mareshki None
0 / 17
12 / 240
External support
  Czech Republic Freedom and Direct Democracy
Svoboda a přímá demokracie (SPD)
Tomio Okamura Identity and Democracy
2 / 21
19 / 200
Opposition
  Estonia Conservative People's Party of Estonia
Eesti Konservatiivne Rahvaerakond (EKRE)
Mart Helme Identity and Democracy
1 / 7
19 / 101
Government
  France National Rally
Rassemblement national (RN)
Marine Le Pen Identity and Democracy
20 / 74
7 / 577
Opposition
  Greece New Right
Νέα Δεξιά (ΝΔ)
Failos Kranidiotis None
0 / 21
0 / 300
Opposition
  Italy League
Lega
Matteo Salvini Identity and Democracy
28 / 73
123 / 630
Government
  Netherlands Party for Freedom (Associate)
Partij voor de Vrijheid (PVV)
Geert Wilders None
0 / 26
20 / 150
Opposition
  Poland Congress of the New Right
Kongres Nowej Prawicy (KNP)
Stanisław Żółtek None
0 / 51
0 / 460
Opposition
  Slovakia We Are Family
Sme Rodina (SR)
Boris Kollár None
0 / 14
11 / 150
Opposition
  United Kingdom For Britain Anne Marie Waters None
0 / 73
0 / 650
Opposition

Other related partiesEdit

The Dutch Party for Freedom (PVV), despite not being a member of MENL, participates in its political group in the European Parliament, ENL.[21]

MENL leaders also have public political relations of some kind with Brothers of Italy (FdI, Italy)[22] and Freedom and Direct Democracy (SPD, Czech Republic).[23] The latter is now a full member of the pan-European party.

In February 2016, FPÖ's leader Heinz-Christian Strache was invited by the anti-Euro & anti-immigration party AfD and its leader Frauke Petry to their congress in Düsseldorf and the AfD also announced a cooperation pact with the FPÖ.[24][25] In April 2016, AfD's vice-president Alexander Gauland also proposed an alliance with Marine Le Pen's National Rally.[26] Therefore, AfD's MEP Marcus Pretzell joined the Europe of Nations and Freedom group on 30 April 2016.

In February 2017, French MEP Edouard Ferrand met with VOX's leaders during a meeting of the Spanish right-wing party.[27] Back in 2016, VOX's president Santiago Abascal had already met with one of the National Rally's leaders, Louis Aliot, also one of MENL's MEP in the European Parliament.[28]

Former member partiesEdit

Among members of MENL's predecessor European Alliance for Freedom (EAF), the following parties did not join MENL:

StructureEdit

PresidentEdit

Members of the BureauEdit

TreasurerEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Nordsieck, Wolfram (2019). "European Union". Parties and Elections in Europe. Archived from the original on 8 June 2017. Retrieved 30 May 2019.
  2. ^ "Le Pen party steals Farage's Italian allies". The Times. 29 May 2014. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  3. ^ "Marine Le Pen fails to form far-right bloc in European parliament | World news". The Guardian. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  4. ^ "Le Pen's Far-Right EU Parliament Alliance Fails at Start". Ibtimes.co.uk. 24 June 2014. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  5. ^ Cas Mudde. "The EAF is dead! Long live the MENL!". openDemocracy. Retrieved 29 December 2014.
  6. ^ "Communiqué d'Aymeric Chauprade, chef de Délégation du Front National au Parlement européen". Front National. Retrieved 29 December 2014.
  7. ^ "Grants from the European Parliament to political parties at European level 2004-2015", March 2015, Europarl.europa.eu, retrieved 27 April 2015
  8. ^ "Grants from the European Parliament to political foundations at European level 2008-2015", March 2015, Europarl.europa.eu/, retrieved 27 April 2015
  9. ^ "À Perpignan, le Front national accuse l'Europe et le pouvoir (notre interview video de Marine Le Pen)". 27 June 2015.
  10. ^ "Colloquium Soevereiniteit: Grenzen Stellen". Grenzenstellen.eu. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  11. ^ Frédéric Chardon (15 September 2015). "Tous les partis flamands ont approuvé la venue de Marine Le Pen". La Libre.be. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  12. ^ "Fratelli d'Italia – Alleanza Nazionale | Immigrazione, sabato 24 ottobre confronto a Trieste tra Giorgia Meloni e il vicepresidente del Front National, Louis Aliot". Fratelli-italia.it. 20 October 2015. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  13. ^ "Victoire de l'UDC: beaucoup de Français enthousiastes - Le Temps". Letemps.ch (in French). Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  14. ^ "Foundation for a Europe of Nations and Freedom - Contact". Fenl.eu. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  15. ^ "Colloquium Vrijheid". Colloquiumvrijheid.eu. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  16. ^ "Europe's right-wing parties meet near Vienna, urge Brexit". DW.COM. 17 June 2016. Retrieved 17 March 2017.
  17. ^ Posaner, Joshua (3 September 2016). "Far-right groups ordered to pay European Parliament €800,000". Politico.eu. Retrieved 17 March 2017.
  18. ^ "Response to the shameless lies of the website Politico". Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom. 15 September 2016. Retrieved 17 March 2017.
  19. ^ "National delegation". MENL. Retrieved 6 August 2015.
  20. ^ "Fête des Nations du MENL". MENL. Retrieved 18 April 2018.
  21. ^ "European Parliament : MEPs". Europarl.europa.eu. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  22. ^ "Destra, Marine Le Pen incontra Giorgia Meloni e Gianni Alemanno (video) | Europa Quotidiano". Europaquotidiano.it. 28 July 2003. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  23. ^ "Tomio Okamura svolal všechny své lidi a bylo rušno: Nepřátelští vetřelci! Pokus o vraždu. Delegace od Marine Le Pen i provolání k Zemanovi | ParlamentniListy.cz – politika ze všech stran". Parlamentnilisty.cz. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  24. ^ "Deutsche AfD und FPÖ beschließen Zusammenarbeit - FPÖ - derStandard.at › Inland". Derstandard.at. Retrieved 22 April 2016.
  25. ^ "AfD und FPÖ probten in Düsseldorf den Schulterschluss | WAZ.de". Derwesten.de (in German). 14 February 2016. Retrieved 3 April 2016.
  26. ^ "AfD-Vize Alexander Gauland erwägt offenbar Fraktion mit Front National - SPIEGEL ONLINE". Spiegel.de. 10 April 2016. Retrieved 22 April 2016.
  27. ^ "Edouard Ferrand, del Frente Nacional francés: "Amigos de VOX, no estáis solos. Somos capaces hoy por hoy de proponer un proyecto europeo alternativo al actual"". VOX Partido Político Castellón. 25 February 2017. Retrieved 17 March 2017.
  28. ^ "Vox busca la fórmula del éxito de Le Pen con el Frente Nacional. Noticias de España". Elconfidencial.com. 15 January 2017. Retrieved 17 March 2017.