Darmanin, who has also led a recent crackdown on extremist Muslim organisations, said he was “outraged by the efforts by Génération Identitaire activists to undermine the republic.”
Last week, around 30 members of Génération Identitaire (Generation Identity) gathered at the Col de Portillion pass on the border of France and Spain in what they termed a surveillance operation to “defend Europe.”
It was the latest of several mountain patrols in recent years, often involving the building of fences at key crossing points, that have led to skirmishes with migrants and activists.
“If there is enough evidence, I will not hesitate to advise closing it down,” Darmanin told a press conference.
(article continues below)
See also on The Local:
Several lawmakers in southern France have called on the government to shut down Génération Identitaire, but it is the first time Darmanin has publicly condemned the group’s actions.
In August 2019, the group’s leader and two other activists were handed six-month prison sentences after they set up a blockade in the French Alps and rented two helicopters to search for migrants.
In response, a group of around 100 rights activists escorted some 30 migrants into France, sparking scuffles with police.
Génération Identitaire was accused of vigilantism and the three GI members were charged with trying to pass themselves off as police officers, though an appeals court overturned that ruling last December.
The French government has promised to tighten immigration and asylum laws in response to the huge influx of people trying to reach Europe from Africa, the Middle East and Asia since 2015.