Marine Le Pen, whose party is riding a wave of anti-immigration and anti-Muslim voter sentiment around Europe, says it will cut public funds to religious groups in towns where it wins municipal elections this month.
Le Pen told The Associated Press in an interview Monday that secularism will be strictly applied in towns where her far-right National Front prevails on March 23 and 30, and that referendums will be held on major issues.
Le Pen, 45, praised the recent Swiss decision, in a referendum, to cap immigration, saying countries have an “inalienable right” to control their borders.
The National Front reached a high in 2012 when Le Pen scored 18 per cent in presidential elections. But the party wants to establish itself in towns around France with the municipal vote.