The return of Nicolas Sarkozy

The predicament of the French right is not unlike that of the US Republican Party. Choosing someone to lead the party to electoral victory requires pa(...)

Marine Le Pen, France’s National Front  leader, delivers a speech at their congress in Lyon. Ms Le Pen, the sole candidate, won 100 per cent of the vote. Photograph: Robert Pratta/Reuters

Two leading contenders for the presidency of France have been elected to head their respective political parties. Former president Nicolas Sarkozy won(...)

 Nicolas Sarkozy with Rachida Dati at the Élysée Palace in Paris in 2007. Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Like her political mentor Nicolas Sarkozy, Rachida Dati is a tough survivor with a chip on her shoulder, a fighter whose scrappiness sometimes work(...)

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy: his most faithful lieutenants have disavowed his stand on gay marriage. Photograph: Yoan Valat/EPA

Nicolas Sarkozy needs a dictator’s score in the November 29th election for the leadership of the conservative UMP – something like 80 per cent – if h(...)

 Alain Juppé after an extraordinary meeting of the opposition UMP last year. The party’s nominee – likely Juppé, Nicolas Sarkozy or François Fillon – is almost certain to win the presidency in 2017. Photograph: Getty Images

France’s main opposition party, the conservative UMP, is €74 million in debt. Investigating magistrates searched its offices on October 29th for evide(...)

A return from Elba
  • Europe
  • September 27, 2014, 01:00

It is a measure of the extraordinary levels of unpopularity manifest in polls for France’s President François Hollande – the most unpopular preside(...)

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy leaves a Paris restaurant last Friday, the day he announced on his Facebook page that he is a candidate for the leadership of the conservative UMP party, which will elect its new president on November 29th. Photograph: Reuters/Charles Platiau

When the former French president Nicolas Sarkozy was defeated by François Hollande on May 6th, 2012, he promised to leave French political life. In(...)

A police car passes in front of the headquarters of France’s centre-right UMP political party in Paris.  Photograph: Charles Platiau

The implosion of French political life precipitated by the victory of the far right-wing National Front (FN) in Sunday’s European elections continued (...)

If Marine Le Pen leads her National Front party to victory, she improves her chances of making it to the 2017 presidential run-off. Photograph: Reuters

France will elect 74 MEPs on Sunday week. The government has not organised a civic information campaign, as it usually does for elections. Nearly two-(...)

Rwandan president Paul Kagame: pointed to ‘the direct role of Belgium and France in the political preparation of the genocide, and the participation of the latter in its actual execution’. Photograph: Evan Schneider/UN via Getty Images)

France has reacted with fury to Rwandan president Paul Kagame’s renewed accusations of direct French involvement in the 1994 genocide, on the e(...)