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French election: Fillon's fate hinges on Paris rally


              Conservative presidential candidate Francois Fillon gestures as he arrives to deliver his speech during a campaign meeting in Aubervill...

              Conservative presidential candidate Francois Fillon delivers his speech during a campaign meeting in Aubervilliers, outside Paris, Fran...

              Conservative presidential candidate Francois Fillon waves as he arrives to deliver his speech during a campaign meeting in Aubervillier...

Conservative presidential candidate Francois Fillon gestures as he arrives to deliver his speech during a campaign meeting in Aubervill...

Conservative presidential candidate Francois Fillon delivers his speech during a campaign meeting in Aubervilliers, outside Paris, Fran...

Conservative presidential candidate Francois Fillon waves as he arrives to deliver his speech during a campaign meeting in Aubervillier...

PARIS (AP) — France's presidential campaign is facing a potential turning point as conservative candidate Francois Fillon, facing corruption charges, holds a rally that could determine whether he stays in the race.

Sunday's rally across from the Eiffel Tower is meant to gauge Fillon's remaining support after numerous defections by allies. They're disillusioned by how he has handled the investigation into allegations he arranged parliamentary jobs for his wife and children that they never performed.

Fillon's wife Penelope urged her husband to stay in the race in a newspaper interview published Sunday. They deny wrongdoing.

If Fillon quits, many conservatives want Alain Juppe to run in his place for the two-round April-May vote. Fillon was once the front-runner but polls now favor centrist Emmanuel Macron and far-right leader Marine Le Pen.


Updated : 2021-01-23 02:26 GMT+08:00