Le Pen's replacement turns down party role amid Holocaust controversy

Le Pen's replacement turns down party role amid Holocaust controversy

Le Pen's replacement turns down party role amid Holocaust controversy

After winning in the first round of the elections, the two candidates intensify their campaigns with a view to the balloting scheduled for May 7, in which the president will be defined for the next five years.

A text reads "Choose France" as French far-right leader and presidential candidate Marine Le Pen addresses supporters during an election campaign rally in Nice, southern France, Thursday April 27, 2017.

Jalkh is also among seven people called to trial in an alleged illegal financing scheme for the party - one of the other challenges facing Le Pen's campaign.

Macron has a national television appearance Thursday night.

Macron is a pro-EU candidate who has promised to maintain sanctions on Russian Federation.

Le Pen's years-long attempts to detoxify her party's image - efforts that have brought her one step away from the presidency - faced a new setback when the temporary leader of her National Front party quit amid an uproar over past remarks allegedly questioning the Nazi gas chambers.

Their views are far from universal - some voters encountered in the traditionally right-wing city said they would switch to Le Pen - but there remains wariness among a large part of the electorate.

Le Pen said she would be a president who protects French citizens with "economic patriotism" and protectionist measures.

Asked by YouGov which would be best for Britain if they won - given France's central role in Brexit negotiations - 21% of voters said Le Pen would be best, while 23% said Macron would be the better candidate from a United Kingdom perspective.

Referring to Le Pen's party, the Real Madrid coach and former France worldwide says that he is "far from all these ideas, from this National Front.

That is, everything Marine Le Pen wants to destroy", Macron declared. As the demonstration escalated, riot police deployed tear gas to disperse the protesters.

Le Pen moved to clear the name of long-time collaborator Jean-Francois Jalkh, as well as her own. The far-right French presidential candidate spent several hours, from before dawn on Thursday, on a fishing trawler on the Mediterranean Sea.

Le Pen described Macron and France's employers' lobby, leading trade union and media magnates as "Goliath". She again tore into former banker and finance minister Macron and his more economically liberal program.

He was dismissive of Le Pen's much shorter visit, saying: "She stayed 10 minutes, with selfies and smiles, and that's not a presidential campaign".

The European Parliament (EP) has accused French far-right candidate Marine Le Pen of misappropriating EU funds allocated for the payment of salaries for parliamentary assistants, using them for party work outside the framework of the EP.

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