The right-wing extremist publicist Éric Zemmour declared his presidential candidacy in a video recording on Tuesday: "We have a mission to fulfill," said the 63-year-old politician.

He wanted to “save France”, which is why he decided to run for the presidential election next spring.

The country is unrecognizable, he said, referring to "mass immigration that has exacerbated all problems".

France is "a great nation" and "a great people".

He wanted to save this nation from extinction.

Michaela Wiegel

Political correspondent based in Paris.

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Zemmour described the “population exchange” as reality in his candidacy video.

The elites from left and right would lie to the people.

“We have become inner exiles,” he said.

He no longer has confidence in the changing governments, which is why he wants to "take our fate into our own hands".

For his gloomy inventory, Zemmour had dramatic music and video clips recorded that were supposed to convey the image of a country populated by foreign-looking people.

Zemmour certified France to develop into a "third world country".

He read his statement and kept glancing at the paper, as if he couldn't look the French to whom he was speaking in the eyes.

The former “Le Figaro” journalist had attracted attention in the past few days primarily through appearances that raised doubts about his suitability for president.

In Marseille he was visibly irritated by the protests his visit provoked.

As he got into his car, a passer-by spontaneously showed him her finger.

Zemmour responded in front of the cameras with the same derogatory gesture and added: “And deep inside.” In the background, his young campaign director Sarah Knafo, who, according to research by the glossy magazine “Closer”, is expecting a child, giggled.

Jean-Marie Le Pen is now supporting his daughter

"I used the only language that you and your Antifa comrades understand immediately: yours," Zemmour justified himself afterwards on Twitter. "But it was very inelegant," he added. The mayor of Béziers, Robert Ménard, who has long been one of his supporters, commented that Zemmour behaved in the same way as the "rabble" that he complained about around the clock. His descriptions are terrifying: "You can not only love France, you have to like the French too," said Ménard.

Shortly before the candidacy declaration, Marine Le Pen said that she found Zemmour's contribution to the election campaign superfluous. "I wish he wouldn't compete," she said on the radio station SudRadio on Tuesday. “Zemmour is a polemicist but not a presidential candidate,” she said. Her father Jean-Marie Le Pen, who originally announced his intention to vote for Zemmour, has now turned around. He said Zemmour did not have "the stature" of a president and that his behavior was not that of a future head of state. Zemmour had destroyed his electoral chances when he accused the then head of state Francois Hollande of guilt for the serious terrorist attack in front of the Bataclan concert hall, said Le Pen. The performance had sparked outrage.

One of Zemmour's biggest donors, millionaire Charles Gave, withdrew his support.

The right-wing politician Philippe de Villiers announced that he would not speak at Zemmour's first major election rally in Paris on Sunday.

Villiers said he was then at the historic amusement park in Toledo, which mimicked his hero park in Puy du Fou.

In the latest polls, it looks like Zemmour has already passed its zenith.

The Harris Interactive polling institute found that he can currently expect 13 percent of the vote.

That would put him behind Marine Le Pen, who comes to 20 percent.

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