Member of Greens Rapped for Remark
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Member of Greens Rapped for Remark

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The French minister of the environment, Brice Lalonde, said Thursday that his ministry would stop cooperating with the environmentalist Green Party as long as it refuses to expel “an anti-Semite from its ranks.”

Lalonde and members of the party were outraged by the remarks of one of the Green leaders, Jean Briere, who denounced what he called the “war-mongering role of Israel and the Zionist lobby” in the Persian Gulf war.

“Zionist lobby” is recognized as a code-word for Jews.

“When free criticism of the positions of a Middle Eastern state (Israel) degenerates into appalling anti-Semitism, which could be prosecuted under (French) laws, the only possible attitude is the exclusion of Jean Briere,” the minister said.

Briere’s ouster was also urged by Yves Cochet, a Green Party representative to the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France.

Antoine Waechter, the party’s leader, called Briere’s remarks “an unacceptable, blameworthy mistake.”

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