French leader Marine Le Pen, rising in polls, says National Front party can assure sovereignty

PARIS – French far-right leader Marine Le Pen has told thousands of supporters that her party can build on political gains and a rising profile to extract the country from the “shadows” of Europe and mass immigration and return sovereignty to the French.

Addressing supporters at the National Front’s annual May Day rally Wednesday, Le Pen said her party is the “voice of hope” and a “lantern to light the way.” She denounced the European Union, immigration and global finances, saying they are crushing the values of French civilization.

Le Pen won 18 per cent of the vote in the first round of last year’s presidential race and scored high in two recent polls. Her party now holds two seats in parliament, and looks to consolidate gains before 2014 municipal and European elections.

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