[Marxism] Fwd: Leaked Messages Allegedly Show Kremlin Paid for Le Pen to Endorse Crimea Annexation | VICE News
lnp3 at panix.com
Mon Apr 6 06:19:31 MDT 2015
The Russian hacking collective Anonymous International has leaked close
to 40,000 text messages allegedly sent and received by a high-ranking
Russian official that reference a potential financing deal between
Russia and France's far-right National Front (FN) party in exchange for
FN leader Marine Le Pen's public endorsement of Russia's annexation of
Crimea in March 2014.
The online French investigative journal Mediapart published the hacked
text messages, which allegedly belong to Timur Prokopenko, head of
Russia's internal affairs department.
Last November, reports surfaced that the FN had secured a loan worth
9.46 million euros ($10.40 million) from Moscow's First Czech-Russian
Bank (FCRB), adding to an earlier 2 million euro ($2.20 million) loan
from Russia to FN-linked group Cotelec, which is run by Marine's father,
FN founder Jean-Marie Le Pen. Cyprus-based Vernonsia Holdings Ltd, a
company allegedly owned by a former member of the KGB, reportedly
underwrote the loan to Cotelec.
Marine Le Pen has denied any link between the loans and the party's
position on Crimea, arguing that her party turned to Russia after it was
shunned by French banks. French and European banks are notoriously timid
about lending the FN money, and the anti-immigration political group
found itself on the verge of bankruptcy in 2010.
Last March, Le Pen publicly recognized the results of Crimea's
referendum to break from Ukraine and formally join the Russian
Federation. Le Pen's stance was at odds with the common position held by
France and other Western countries, including the United States, which
viewed the referendum as "unlawful."
The same day that Le Pen vocalized her support of the referendum,
Prokopenko allegedly sent text messages to Konstantin Rykov, a pro-Putin
blogger also known as "Kostya," who, according to the hackers, had
access to Le Pen.
In the messages, the two men applaud Le Pen's endorsement, saying that
the party leader "has not betrayed our expectations." The two men agreed
to "find a way of thanking the French."
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