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African intervention gives Hollande needed boost

AFP/The Local · 17 Dec 2013, 09:20

Published: 17 Dec 2013 09:20 GMT+01:00

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France's unpopular president, Francois Hollande, has found some succour in the latest opinion poll after deploying soldiers to the Central African Republic, gaining four points in a month to 33
percent approval.

The fillip in the BVA monthly survey published Monday lifts Hollande from the 26 percent low he was plumbing in October - the lowest rating of any French president in more than 50 years.

Hollande's approval ratings saw a similar jump after his decision to send troops in to Mali earlier this year.

A BVA representative, Gael Sliman, said Hollande's decision to send French troops into the Central African Republic a week ago to prevent an implosion of the poor country explained the bump, partly compensating public anger over higher taxes and other issues.

"It's also likely that the latest good unemployment figures will start to help this improvement," he said.

The rise in public opinion was also buoying Hollande's prime minister, Jean-Marc Ayrault, whose approval rating rose from 25 percent in October to 28 percent.

Still, 66 percent of the 991 adults in the telephone survey conducted on Thursday and Friday declared they had a bad opinion of Hollande, with most respondents finding the Socialist leader's policies ineffective and unfair.

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Seventy percent disliked Ayrault, with most believing he should be replaced.

The poll's results had a statistical margin of error of up to three percent.

AFP/The Local (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

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