Le Pen hardens tone
Published : 20 Apr 2017, 18:32
Far-right presidential frontrunner Marine Le Pen said yesterday that French people felt "dispossessed" in their own country as she stressed the threats of immigration and terrorism in the final days of campaigning.
The 48-year-old former lawyer has spent years trying to broaden support for her National Front party, but she has signalled a return to the core concerns of many of her supporters in recent speeches.
Speaking on BFM television yesterday, Le Pen emphasised how she would pull France out of the European Union, slash immigration, make it harder to get French nationality and crack down on suspected Islamists.
"French people have the feeling of being dispossessed of their identity, of their social security system and their sovereignty," Le Pen told the channel.
Polls show a four-way race developing ahead of the first round of the election on Sunday between Le Pen, 39-year-old centrist Emmanuel Macron, conservative Francois Fillon and far-left firebrand Jean-Luc Melenchon.
Two of them are expected to advance to a run-off vote on May 7.
After a string of Islamist-inspired assaults in France since 2015, security concerns moved to the centre of the campaign.
Le Pen has proposed expelling any foreigner convicted of a crime or suspected of being radicalised. Convicted extremists with dual nationality would also be stripped of their French passports.
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