President François Hollande on Thursday blasted rising anti-EU rhetoric in France as anachronistic and financially ruinous, less than three weeks before European elections, reports FRANCE 24.
“To exit Europe, is to exit history,” Hollande wrote in a fiery commentary published in newspaper Le Monde on the anniversary of the Allied victory against Nazi Germany in World War II.
Hollande noted that the European Union had risen from the ashes of WWII expressly to bring peace and economic stability to the continent – goals he said the EU had achieved.
“Whom do we owe for this incredible rebirth, this exceptional renaissance? To the union! To the union of citizens, the union of economies, the union of nations,” he wrote.
Quoting from another Socialist, former French president François Mitterrand, Hollande added: “Nationalism means war!… Europe means peace.”
His strong pro-EU statement comes amid opinion polls that reveal that France’s far-right, anti-euro National Front (FN) is the frontrunner in this month’s European parliamentary elections.
Hollande is struggling with the worst approval ratings of any French president in modern history, and last month saw his Socialist Party (PS) suffer a humiliating defeat in nationwide municipal elections.
Read more of this report from FRANCE 24.