22 year-old Maxence Buttey is a municipal councilman for the National Front in Noisy-le-Grand (Seine-Saint-Denis). He recently converted to Islam and was suspended from political office. “I discovered this religion thanks to an acquaintance while at medical school when I was 19. We talked a lot… I was Catholic but, in rereading the Bible, I found many inconsistencies. When reading the Qur’an in depth I understood that this religion is more open,” Buttey said.
The FN says that he can be both a Muslim and a party member and argues that Buttey was suspended not for his conversion but for his behavior, which was found to be proselytizing. According to the FN the young man sent a video to several FN members “praising the visionary aspect of the Qur’an.”
Gaetan Dussausaye, director of the National Youth Front said: “It’s not the conversion that poses a problem. What poses a problem and what led us to take firmer action was the fact that there was an action of proselytism within the FN 93 federation…One must not confuse politics and religion.” He said that they would have instituted similar sanctions if the person had been Catholic.
Buttey responded on Facebook: “Having not proselytized, I will not comment on the sanction against me by the Departmental Secretary of FN 93, a decision which involved only him.” Buttey will appear before a “Disputes Commission” at the end of November. If he loses, he could be permanently banned from the party.