Both candidates fighting to become the next leader of France's main opposition party have claimed victory in a contest that has been marred by allegations of voting irregularities.
Jean-Francois Cope and former prime minister Francois Fillon both claimed victory within thirty minutes of one another last night.
Supporters of Cope said he was 1,000 votes ahead, while Fillon said he had a lead of more than 200 votes. Both camps have made accusations of vote fraud.
The contest to replace Nicolas Sarkozy as leader of the UMP party will now go to an internal voting commission who will announce the official results.
Police raided the home and offices of former French president Nicolas Sarkozy today as part of a judicial inquiry into financial relations between his political camp and the richest woman in France, L'Oreal heiress Liliane Bettencourt.
Sarkozy's lawyer, Thierry Herzog, said the raids, a day after his client had left for Canada on holiday would show nothing and that he had already supplied information to investigators that debunked suspicions of secret meetings with Bettencourt.
Supporters of the French presidential candidate Francois Hollande gathered at a rally in Toulouse in southern France today.
The Socialist party leader is ahead of Nicolas Sarkozy in opinion polls by six to 10 points. Both leaders are battling for votes ahead of Sunday's decisive runoff election.
Nicolas Sarkozy and Francois Hollande go head-to-head in the only televised debate before Sunday's vote.Read the full story ›
French President and conservative candidate for re-election delivered a speech during a campaign rally in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
The conservative Sarkozy is hoping to win over the more than 6 million voters who supported far right leader Marine Le Pen in the first round of France's presidential elections April 22.
The current French president Nicolas Sarkozy has delivered a speech in Paris for an election rally, before the deciding vote on May 6.
Supporters of France's far-right National Front party are celebrating their traditional "Joan of Arc Day" rally in Paris. The party leader Marine Le Pen addressed the crowd telling supporters to make up their own minds about who to vote for in the May 6th election run off.