Sarkozy knocked out of French presidential race


PARIS: Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy crashed out of the presidential election on Sunday, suffering a humiliating defeat in the first round of the rightwing primary. Sarkozy was beaten into third place after a stunning upset by Francois Fillon, who served as his prime minister, with the veteran Alain Juppe finishing second. The surprise result puts Fillon in a commanding position for next Sunday’s second round of a contest that is widely expected to decide France’s next leader. With the French leftwing in disarray, the rightwing candidate is tipped to face — and beat — far-right leader Marine Le Pen in the presidential run-off next May.



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