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French want DSK to stay out of politics: poll

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17:36 CEST+02:00

Most French voters want former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn to stay out of politics, according to a poll published on Thursday after an attempted rape case against him collapsed in New York.

The CSA survey, commissioned by broadcasters BFM and RMC and freesheet 20 Minutes, was conducted on Monday and Tuesday before a US judge said that charges against the 62-year-old Socialist would be dropped.  

It was already clear then that the prosecution case was foundering, but 53 percent of voters told pollsters they nevertheless felt Strauss-Kahn "should not participate in the political debate in the coming months."  

In seven weeks, supporters of Strauss-Kahn's Socialist Party will vote in an open primary to choose a candidate to face centre-right leader President Nicolas Sarkozy in next April's election.  

Strauss-Kahn was once favourite to be the left's candidate and, before his arrest in April on charges of assaulting a hotel maid, polls predicted he would beat Sarkozy and become president of France.  

With all US charges against him dropped he could return to France, but may still face a civil damages action in the United States, while a second woman has accused him of rape in France. He denies the charge.

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