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It was at a European congress held last year by the German extreme-right party the Republicans (Die Republikaner) that Irish billionaire and Eurosceptic Declan Ganley showed his support for the European extreme right. In a message read out at the meeting, Ganley sent his best wishes to the extremist gathering. Among those present were representatives of notorious parties such as Austria's Freedom Party (FPÖ) and Vlaams Belang of Belgium.

Michael Paulwitz, head of the Republicans' press department, claims that their party hasn't been in contact with Ganley since the congress – but that they're definitely interested in getting in touch with the Libertas founder again.
– Ganley is a very interesting person to us. We will be seeking a renewed contact with Libertas after the European elections, Paulwitz told Expo.

Not sanctioned

But according to Libertas' spokesperson Nick Wright, there are no connections between their party and the Republicans.
– That greeting does not mean that we have a link to the party. What Declan Ganley did one year ago is his business, but it was definitely not a sanctioned Libertas greeting and it has no bearing on the current elections. Declan Ganley often makes statements on his own.

Libertas is a pan-European party planning to run for the upcoming European Parliament elections in all 27 member states. The party's aim is to reform the European union to the core and they are highly critical of the Lisbon treaty. According to Nick Wright, any co-operation with the Republicans is unlikely:
– It's very nice that he [Paulwitz] finds Declan Ganley interesting, but there have not been any discussions about renewing anything after the elections, and claims of past connections are not true. We are not interested in contacts with the Republicans.

Daniel Poohl
Erik Sidenbladh

This article has also been published in Expo #2-2009.

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