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Defiant Fillon urges supporters to fight on at Paris rally

French conservative politician Francois Fillon has urged his supporters to keep fighting for his presidential campaign at a defiant rally after he was embroiled in corruption allegations.

He has refused to give up his campaign to lead the country despite sliding down the polls following claims that he arranged parliamentary jobs for his wife and children which they never actually performed.

Mr Fillon urged thousands of supporters not to "give up the fight" at a central Paris rally backing his campaign on Sunday.

Thousands of Mr Fillon's supporters chanted 'Fillon, President' at the rally. Credit: AP

Thousands of people turned out to the rally - but he is facing growing calls to step aside. Counter demonstrations were also taking place against his campaign.


Former All Black Williams suspended by French club after arrest

Ali Williams. Credit: PA

Former New Zealand international Ali Williams has been suspended by French club Racing 92 after he was arrested in possession of cocaine.

Toulon player James O'Connor, who has been capped 44 times by Australia, was also arrested in Paris in the early hours of Saturday, according to reports in France.

"A player of Racing 92 is at the heart of an investigation into the purchase and possession of cocaine," the club said in a statement.

"In this context, it was decided to suspend Ali Williams.

"If the investigation confirmed the possession of cocaine and the transaction, it would not only be against the law but also a serious fault in terms of our ethics."

Williams, 35, who was a part of the All Blacks side that won the 2011 World Cup on home soil, came out of retirement last summer to play for Top 14 champions Racing 92.


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