The head of  La France Insoumise Mathilde Panot, one of the leaders of La France Insoumise Party (LFI), was summoned by the police as part of an investigation into allegations of “apology of terrorism”. EPA-EFE/TERESA SUAREZ


LFI’s Panot summoned by police over alleged ‘apology of terrorism’


Mathilde Panot, one of the leaders of La France Insoumise Party (LFI), was summoned by the police for allegedly engaging in “apology of terrorism”.

The move on April 23 forms part of an ongoing investigation opened following a press release by the LFI published on October 7, the day of the Hamas terrorist attacks on Israel.

Following that, LFI was accused of justifying the Hamas atrocities by denouncing the Islamist movement and Israeli colonisation at the same time.

Panot responded to the police action, saying: “We will not be silent. No summons, no intimidation of any kind will prevent us from protesting against the ongoing genocide against the Palestinian people.”

She also cautioned against what she described as the “serious misuse of the justice system to suppress political expression”.

This, Panot added, followed “a long series of other attempts to silence voices in favour of peace”.

She also referenced the recent cancellation of a conference featuring the LFI’s Jean-Luc Mélenchon and its European Parliament candidate Rima Hassan at the University of Lille by French authorities.

At the time, the event was stopped by authorities citing concerns over public safety concerns, sparking a broader discussion on freedom of speech in France.

Manon Aubry, a prominent LFI figure and MEP, echoed Panot’s sentiments, expressing her worries regarding the state of French democracy.

“Our democracy is hurtling towards authoritarianism at an alarming pace,” she said.

“We must all react.”

Panot is not the first hard-left politician to be summoned for “apology of terrorism”; Hassan was also called in a few days ago by the police for the same reason.

Mélenchon has responded publicly to the developments, criticising what he saw as politically motivated complaints against LFI.

“Just as the bans on conferences and convictions of trade unionists have been carried out without too much solidarity, the far-right is advancing,” he said.

Mélenchon accused “pro-Netanyahu associations” of being behind the complaints, reigniting allegations of anti-Semitism within the French Left.