Marine Le Pen’s father condemns grieving husband of murdered gay policeman Xavier Jugele

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Marine Le Pen’s father – and the founder of her party – has condemned the husband of a murdered gay policeman for “exalting” same-sex marriage.

Xavier Jugele, 37, was murdered on Thursday while on duty on Champs Elysees avenue, in an attack which has since been claimed by so-called Islamic State.

The murderer, 39-year-old Karim Cheurfi, was killed at the scene. He had served more than 12 years in prison for shooting at police officers and was being investigated by intelligence service at the time.

On Tuesday, Jugele’s husband Etienne Cardiles spoke to hundreds of mourners including presidential candidates Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron, as well as current president Francois Hollande.

In an emotional, moving speech, Cardiles said his husband had lived “a life of joy and laughter, in which love and tolerance were your uncontested masters.

“You lived like a star, and leave like a star.”

He added that he did not “feel hatred, Xavier, because it is not like you – because it does not correspond to anything that made your heart beat, nor why you entered the police force.”

Jean-Marie Le Pen, who founded the National Front in 1972, condemned Cardiles’ speech.

Speaking as part of a regular series of interviews on his YouTube channel, the five-time presidential candidate said: “The long speech he made in some ways institutionalised homosexual marriage.”

He added that the grieving husband’s words “exalted it in a public way, and that shocked me.”

In 2015, Le Pen was expelled from the party he led for 39 years after making a series of controversial remarks, including labelling the Prime Minister an immigrant.

His daughter, who has pledged to abolish same-sex marriage, stood down from her role as National Front party leader on Tuesday.

She took the step after coming second in the presidential election on Sunday, which gained her access to the run-off against Macron, the centrist candidate, on May 7.

Earlier today, the party announced that Jean-Francois Jalkh, who was chosen to replace Marine Le Pen as NF leader, had decided to stand aside over allegations that he is a Holocaust denier.

During an interview in 2000, Jalkh that it was “impossible – and I stress, impossible” to use Zyklon B “in mass exterminations.”

The Nazis used Zyklon B, a deadly gas, to kill approximately a million people during the Holocaust.

Jalkh has denied the allegations.