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France to ban far-right party

Rifle man held
A spectator grappled with Brunerie before police arrived and overwhelmed him  

PARIS, France (CNN) -- The French government has agreed to disband Radical Unity -- a far-right group with ties to a gunman who police say attempted to shoot President Jacques Chirac.

Police say Maxime Brunerie, 25, who allegedly tried to shoot Chirac during the Bastille Day parade in Paris on July 14, was involved with various extreme-right and neo-Nazi groups, including Radical Unity.

Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy told reporters on Tuesday the government had adopted a decree that breaks up the group.

A 1936 law prohibits the existence of groups that provoke racial discrimination or ethnic hatred.

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Alleged gunman's reported links to neo-Nazi groups. (July 15)

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Gunman at Bastille day celebrations  

The decision requires approval from the Council of State, France's highest administrative body.

Radical Unity said in a written statement it "never tried to cut itself off from legality" and was not a militia group, the type of organisation targeted by the law.

Brunerie was placed under investigation last week for attempted assassination.

Bystanders wrestled Brunerie to the ground as, police said, he attempted to fire at Chirac with a .22 calibre rifle.

Nobody was injured in the incident and the parade continued without further interruption.

Brunerie was taken to the Palace of Justice on Friday under a heavy police escort for a meeting with Investigating Judge Jean-Baptiste Parlos.

He has been put under formal investigation, which will lead to a psychological evaluation.

Brunerie is alleged to have told police he hated Chirac and wanted to kill him "to save France."


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