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Last Updated: Monday, 19 February 2007, 10:49 GMT
France's Royal to rejig campaign
Segolene Royal unveils her manifesto
Ms Royal unveiled a 100-point manifesto last week
French Socialist presidential candidate Segolene Royal is to revamp her campaign team to try to gain ground on her right-wing rival Nicolas Sarkozy.

The latest opinion polls give Mr Sarkozy a 10-point advantage ahead of the first round of voting in April.

Ms Royal, who has faltered after a strong start, is to announce her campaign team changes this week, probably on Thursday.

She is due on national TV later on Monday to answer audience questions.

Ms Royal, who entered the presidential race strongly, has seen her support slip in recent weeks.

Questions over her election programme, reports of internal dissent in the Socialist Party, and a number of gaffes have all dented her showing in the polls.

"The team needs to be strengthened and better structured," Ms Royal told the French news agency, AFP, on Sunday.

"We must restore hierarchy," she said, saying there would be "more people in positions of responsibility."

TV appearance

Ms Royal, who is bidding to become France's first woman president, won the Socialist Party's nomination in November.

She has played down her current poor showing in the polls, saying it is still a long way to go before the first round of voting on 22 April.

Ms Royal is to appear on a Monday evening television show called I Have a Question to Ask You, when she will take questions from members of the public.

This will be followed by a rally in Rennes on Tuesday that will focus on jobs.

The changes in her campaign team would help her compete with the "disproportionate means" that Mr Sarkozy has at his disposal as interior minister, Ms Royal said.

"Everyone knows that there is a difference between the resources that I have and those of the interior minister."




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