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French Socialists, Greens, Communists join forces to halt Front National election surge
France's ruling Socialist Party on Monday announced its decision to join forces with the EELV (Green party) and the Communist Party, in a bid to block advances by the far-right National Front (FN) in nationwide local elections.
The move will see the three parties field combined electoral lists in the second round of the elections next Sunday, at which the FN is poised to win control of up to 15 medium-sized towns, after a strong showing in the first found on Sunday.
The Socialist Party also announced that it would tactically withdraw from a three-way contest in the southern town of St Gilles, leaving voters with a straight choice between the FN candidate and the mainstream centre right UMP.
The poor showing by the Socialists has led to renewed speculation that, after the second round vote next Sunday, President Hollande will announce a major reshuffle of his ministerial team.