Article published on the 2009-02-12 Latest update 2009-02-12 16:46 TU
France will maintain the ban until the European Commission has made a ruling on the matter, Fillon said at a press conference with Commission chief José Manuel Barroso in Brussels on Thursday.
His remarks came after Le Figaro newspaper published findings of the official food watchdog, Afssa, which said that there was no evidence to support claims that MON810 poses a health risk.
An earlier report said evidence showed that the crop had an effect on insects, a species of earthworm and micro-organisms, but 12 of the 15 scientists who compiled it later declared that their findings had been misrepresented.
Environmental campaigners back up Fillon's argument.
The ban was "based on ecological reasons and on the problem of dissemination of pollen and of the toxin which is in the maize", says Greenpeace GM expert Arnaud Apothécaire.
There is a "concerted attempt" to influence the European Commission, which has called on France, Austria, Greece and Hungary to lift their safeguard measures against EU-approved GM crops, he told RFI.