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EU in focus as French presidential candidates face off
22 April 2017, 12:55 | Jan Cross
The Latest: French candidate on EU: We change it or we leave
Under French election rules, Friday was due to be the final day of campaigning before Sunday's first round of voting.
Republican Francois Fillon, the National Front's Marine Le Pen, centrist Emmanuel Macron, and Socialist Benoit Hamon all cancelled events planned for Friday and instead made televised statements about how they would fight terrorism.
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It's a scenario that could become reality on Sunday, when a field of 11 candidates will be whittled down to two ahead of a runoff scheduled for June 7.
"Many suggest that the euro could rally on a Macron-Le Pen second round, given the tradition of forging a united front against the National Front".
Le Pen repeated calls for a crackdown on radical Islam, which Macron pronounced "nonsense".
All the candidates are seeking to woo the huge number of undecideds - some 31 per cent of those likely to vote, according to an Ipsos poll on Friday. "Control our borders, otherwise we won't stop this wave!" she said.
This attack will devastate Paris and it is one more unpredictable element in an already unpredictable campaign. There have also been attacks on a satirical weekly and a kosher store.
The dollar caught its breath in Asian trading on Thursday, holding above lows hit earlier this week as investors awaited this weekend´s first round of voting in France´s presidential election.
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"Our condolences to our country and the people of France".
"There are a majority of people who can't stand that old politics", she said.
Bloodshed had always been feared ahead of Sunday's first round after a string of jihadist atrocities since 2015, and the shooting on the Champs-Elysees forced security to the top of the agenda in the campaign.
Globalist forces in France and around the world have sought to derail Le Pen's bid.
People on the French security services' watch list for radicalization should also be expelled from France and have their French citizenship revoked, she said.
But Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve accused her of attempting to use the shooting for political gain, saying she was "seeking, as she does after every tragedy, to take advantage of it".
"As we wait for more definite information, I think we need to attend to our duties as citizens: no panic, we shouldn't interrupt our democratic process", Melenchon said.
A deadly shooting occurred at Paris' iconic boulevard, Champs-Élysées, late on Thursday leaving a policeman dead, and three others injured. The far right's candidate, Marine Le Pen is now trailing behind him in the first round of the polls, but runoffs are resoundingly against a Le Pen presidency.
In the wake of the attack, Macron urged voters: "Do not give in to fear, do not give in to division, do not give in to intimidation".
Melenchon, who would hike taxes on the rich and spend 100 billion euros ($107 billion) of borrowed money on vast housebuilding and renewable energy projects, gained 1.5 points to 19.5 percent as he built further on momentum he has seen after strong performances in television debates.
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