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Marine Le Pen ordered to undergo psychiatric evaluation

Politico, Sep 20

French far-right leader Marine Le Pen was ordered by a court to undergo psychiatric evaluation as part of an investigation into her posting of images of Islamic State executions on social media, she said Thursday.

A clearly annoyed Le Pen wrote on Twitter: “I thought I had seen it all: but no! For having denounced the horrors of #Daesh in tweets, the ‘justice’ department is submitting me to a psychiatric evaluation! How far will they go?!”

She later told journalists that “I’d like to see how the judge would try and force me do it,” Reuters reported.

In January, Le Pen was charged with circulating “violent messages that incite terrorism or pornography or seriously harm human dignity,” and that can be viewed by a minor. She was placed under formal investigation in March.

According to a copy of a court document, which Le Pen published on Twitter, the judge wants to assess if she suffers from any mental illness that could have affected her understanding of what she was doing when she posted the tweets.

Le Pen posted the photos in 2015 in response to a TV journalist’s comparison between ISIS and the French far right. “Daesh is this!” the far-right leader captioned one photo, using an Arabic acronym for Islamic State.

One photo was of James Foley, an American journalist who was beheaded by ISIS. Another depicted a man in an orange jumpsuit being driven over by a tank, while a third showed a man being burned alive inside a cage.

Le Pen later took down the Foley photo at the request of his family, claiming she didn’t initially know his identity.

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