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Last Updated: Thursday, 17 May 2007, 16:13 GMT 17:13 UK
French leaders make running start
Nicolas Sarkozy jogs back to the Elysee Palace
Mr Sarkozy jogged with Mr Fillon during the election campaign
France's new leaders have set a brisk pace for their government by going for a jog together just moments after Prime Minister Francois Fillon was sworn in.

President Nicolas Sarkozy had breakfast with Mr Fillon before confirming his appointment as prime minister.

After pausing for a ceremony to mark the handover of prime ministerial power, the allies were reunited for a jog in Paris' Bois de Boulogne.

Mr Fillon was Mr Sarkozy's election campaign director.

Pace of reform

Mr Fillon, a moderate conservative, is expected to play a leading role in the president's plans to reform France's employment and welfare laws.

FRANCOIS FILLON
Francois Fillon
Nicolas Sarkozy's election campaign director and jogging partner
A senator, from the left of Mr Sarkozy's conservative UMP party
Has a Welsh wife, Penelope, and five children

But journalists were surprised when Mr Fillon hit the ground running by arriving at the Elysee presidential palace dressed in his jogging kit immediately after taking power.

Mr Fillon, 53, and Mr Sarkozy, 52, kept up the pace for an hour before the president - mobile phone in hand throughout the workout - returned to the Elysee.

The two were regular running partners throughout France's presidential election campaign.

All this is a new and very different style for the French presidency, says the BBC's Caroline Wyatt in Paris.

French heads of state have traditionally been somewhat remote, patrician figures.

But it is clear that Mr Sarkozy and Mr Fillon are serious about getting this nation moving again - and setting their own personal example, says our correspondent.


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