- Associated Press - Friday, February 17, 2017

PARIS (AP) — French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen is facing new troubles, with an investigation into her European Parliament assistants and scathing new criticism from the U.N. human rights commissioner.

Investigative website Mediapart published excerpts from a European Commission fraud office report that said Le Pen admitted to irregularities in paychecks for one assistant targeted in the European Parliament probe. It’s among several legal issues hanging over France’s April-May election.

Le Pen, speaking on France Bleu radio Friday, acknowledged settling an accounting problem with the Parliament, but insisted “there was nothing fictitious, no fake jobs or anything like this.”

Meanwhile, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, in a blunt speech in Washington, called rising support for Le Pen’s nationalist ideas a potential threat to world peace.

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