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In France, the left promises “rupture”, the far right “national union”

Photo: Loic Venance Agence France-Presse Prime Minister Gabriel Attal denounced “boutique deals” on both the right and the left and tried to boost the morale of the government camp, which was destined for a heavy defeat.

Jérémy Tordjman – Agence France-Presse in Paris

Published and updated on June 14

  • Europe

The French left put aside its divisions on Ukraine or the Middle East to present on Friday a common program of “rupture” in the early legislative elections and prevent the coming to power of the extreme right, which promised a government ” of national unity” in the event of victory.

On the eve of a weekend of demonstrations across France, rallies against the far right have already took place in several cities, notably in Lyon (south-east) where incidents left four injured.

After the rout of the presidential camp in the European elections and the dissolution of the National Assembly decided by President Emmanuel Macron, the main left-wing parties met on Friday in Paris to celebrate a hard-won union and detail their roadmap in the event of success in the early legislative elections of June 30 and July 7.

Hastily formed in the face of the National Rally (RN, far right) after its triumph in the European elections, the “New Popular Front” promises to increase the minimum wage, reverse the very unpopular pension reform and restore the wealth tax.

Fruit of negotiations under tension, his common program also outlines a compromise on the international questions which divided the left and exploded its previous coalition.

On the Middle East, he thus calls “to act for the release of hostages held since the Hamas terrorist massacres […] and for the release of Palestinian political prisoners.”

The main force on the left, La France insoumise (LFI, radical left) has so far refused to assimilate Palestinian Hamas to a terrorist movement, breaking with the position of France and the European Union.

On the war in Ukraine, another point of tension, the coalition undertakes to “unfailingly defend the sovereignty and freedom of the Ukrainian people” and to ensure arms deliveries to Kiev “necessary”.

However, there remains the debate on who, on the left, could become prime minister.

Arrived leading the left in the European elections, the social-democrat MEP Raphaël Glucksmann called on Friday to reject the hypothesis Jean-Luc Mélenchon, tribune of the radical left. The former LFI presidential candidate recently created controversy by asserting that anti-Semitism was “residual” in France, despite official figures showing an outbreak of anti-Jewish acts.

In its joint program, the New Popular Front states on the contrary that “racist, anti-Semitic and Islamophobic acts […] are experiencing a worrying, unprecedented explosion.”

Read also

  • Legislative elections in France: towards an alliance between the right and the far right ?
  • Emmanuel Macron calls for unity against the “extremes”
  • Disavowed by the ballot box, Emmanuel Macron dissolves the National Assembly

Ciotti's legal action

Expected to be prime minister in the event of victory, RN president Jordan Bardella on Friday made this united left “his main adversary” in the legislative elections, while the Macronist camp is behind in the polls.

Credited with more than 30% of voting intentions, the RN seeks to broaden its support in order to gain power for the first time in its history.

Its leader, Marine Le Pen, promised Friday that the party would form “a government of national unity” to “get France out of the rut” and announced “a number of surprises on Sunday” , deadline for submitting candidacies.

The party, heir to the National Front co-founded in 1972 by a Waffen-SS, however, continues to worry part of the country. Several thousand people marched against the far right on Friday in several cities, on the eve of a weekend of mobilization across the country.

“We already “tried” in 1940! » or “We don't play with fire”, in reference to the logo of the National Rally, said the banners in Lyon where 3,500 demonstrators were counted by the prefecture. In Montpellier, 4,000 people demonstrated according to the prefecture, and more than 10,000 according to the organizers. At the end of the evening in Lyon, clashes left three police officers and one demonstrator injured, according to the prefecture.

Jordan Bardella denounced calls “extremely dangerous” to “insurrection”, while saying he is “very attached to freedom of expression”.

On the political level, his party has recently garnered several rallies including that of Eric Ciotti, president of the main right-wing party, Les Républicains (LR), plunged into a deep crisis.

For having allied with the RN, Mr. Ciotti was excluded by the authorities of his party but the Paris judicial court invalidated his exclusion on Friday.

Face this accelerated political recomposition, Prime Minister Gabriel Attal denounced “boutique agreements” on the right as on the left.

The uncertainty in the country worries the markets: the Paris Stock Exchange signed its worst week since March 2022 (-6.23%) and erased its gains for the year.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116