French campaign revs up with rival rallies, May Day marches

French campaign revs up with rival rallies, May Day marches

According to the Daily Telegraph, loud explosions, apparently from large firecrackers, were heard across Paris, while riot police surrounded and used teargas on the 150-strong group, who lobbed firebombs and missiles.

Interior Minister Matthias Fekl condemned the violence and said one officer was seriously burned on the hand while another had serious burns to the face, without saying which was the officer in the photograph.

Polls consider her centrist rival Emmanuel Macron the front-runner in the vote, seen as a test of global populism and decisive moment for the European Union. At a larger union rally nearby, some marchers carried signs reading "Let's block the National Front" - but no one was openly rallying for Macron.

The second round will take place in the middle of a weekend extended by a public holiday.

In an opinion piece in Le Monde published Tuesday, Varoufakis, a self-proclaimed "erratic Marxist", took a swipe at the far-left candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon who has not endorsed a candidate since his defeat in the first round of the French election on April 23.

She also claimed that his pro-business policies would not create jobs but send them overseas and leave French workers hungry.

On the contrary, she added, "if you consider that what you have lived through for five years is hell, that it is tax hell, economic hell, hell of the unfair global competition, hell of massive immigration, hell of the rise of Islamic fundamentalism, hell of insecurity, so you have to vote for me".

Wanted or not, Ms Le Pen was praised by her 88-year-old father, Jean-Marie, who she expelled from the Front National in 2015 after he reiterated anti-Semitic comments.

A protestor simply identified as Sophie told Le Monde, "I am against Macron, but the most urgent thing is to stop the Front National from winning".

He said: "She is not Joan of Arc but she accepts the same mission".

However aides of Ms Le Pen attempted to brush off the criticism.

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"We could well have an upside down April 21, 2002, with a strong mobilisation in the 1st round [followed by] demobilisation in the second", Durpaire told the broadcaster Monday.

Despite Ms Le Pen gaining a few points in the last few days, the polls still have Mr Macron trouncing her on Sunday after what looks set to become an increasingly tense and nasty campaign.

The 39-year-old Macron returned the insults at a Paris rally in front of thousands of supporters.

"Don't boo her, fight her! Go and convince (others), make her lose next Sunday". Mr Dupont-Aignan shocked many by agreeing to be Ms Le Pen's prime minister if she wins the presidency. She promises to pull France out of the European Union and return to the franc currency, and has denounced globalization's effects on the French economy and culture. He condemned Ms Le Pen and Mr Macron as the candidates of the "extreme right" and "extreme finance".

Some remain angry and fearful about the possibility of a Le Pen victory.

Mr Melenchon says he will cast a vote against Ms Le Pen but will not instruct his supporters on how to vote.

Although the speech caused an online sensation over plagiarism, it appeared to be an attempt by Le Pen to reach out to Fillon's supporters.

"It is very clear and we've known for months that Macron is really looking forward to this debate", Schön-Quinlivan said.

"She is the only one with convictions", he said, adding that Macron, in trying to please everybody, "says yes to everything".

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

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