April 23 - Europeans concerned about the national front surge in the French elections as Sarkozy fights to win their vote in the run off. Lindsey Parietti reports.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy will have to shore up far right votes to stay in the job. After the first-round of presidential elections Sunday, Sarkozy stands a close second after centre-left candidate Francois Hollande. The National Front candidate took almost 20 percent and the hard left around 10 percent. One Reuters analyst says it will be a tight-rope-act for Sarkozy to woo both camps. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS EUROPEAN AFFAIRS EDITOR PAUL TAYLOR, SAYING: "Sarkozy has to really do the splits to try and win the second round. He's behind on the first round, he's got about 20 percent of the vote to the right of him, 10 percent of vote to the left him. He has to capture almost all of both of those to have a chance of winning. And of course the more he moves to the right the more he abandons the centre to Francois Hollande, the Socialist candidate who ran ahead of him." The far right surge has worried some EU foreign ministers meeting in Luxembourg. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SWEDISH FOREIGN MINISTER CARL BILDT SAYING: I am concerned with the sentiments that we see that are sort of against open societies, against an open Europe, that does worry me, as you said, not only in France, we see it in both the far-right and the far-left". And markets fell Monday, with some analysts attributing the drop to uncertainty over France's future economic program, as well as the election showing of the more extreme parties. Lindsey Parietti, Reuters