Far-right professor excluded

February 25, 2005

Bruno Gollnisch, second in command of France's extreme-right Front National, has been suspended again from the University of Jean Moulin Lyon-3, writes Jane Marshall in Paris.

Professor Gollnisch had this month resumed teaching his courses in international law and Japanese civilisation after more than three months'

exclusion from the university for questioning the existence of the Nazi death camps in October. His comments were made in reaction to the report of an inquiry into racism and revisionism at the university.

On his return, there were violent clashes between his right-wing student supporters and opponents backed by the student union Unef, the Union of Jewish Students and antirevisionist student action group Hippocampe.

The following day, Francois Fillon, the Education Minister, issued the order suspending Professor Gollnisch.

Later, at a press conference at the FN's headquarters near Paris, Professor Gollnisch said he would appeal to the State Council against the minister's order, which is valid for a year.

The affair has revived memories of the university's association with revisionist tendencies going back to the 1970s.

In 2002, after demands from staff and students backed by anti-racist associations, Jack Lang, then Education Minister, set up an inquiry into racism and revisionism at Jean Moulin.

The commission reported last October that the university was not fascist, although its founders had tolerated extreme right-wing ideas.

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