Violent clashes break out ahead of rally by far-right Le Pen

PARIS: Violent clashes broke out both inside and outside a venue in the Corsican city of Ajaccio that was supposed to hold a rally by French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen.

According to French television BFM TV, Corsican nationalists arrived at Le Pen's rally on Saturday and clashed with her far-right supporters before being evacuated by security. The disturbance delayed the start of Le Pen's program by an hour after it was moved to another venue.

David Rachline, Le Pen's campaign manager, later tweeted that a separate group had clashed with police outside the venue. He was critical of the security arrangements.

Le Pen is among the leading contenders in France's two-round presidential vote. The top two-vote getters on April 23 will go into a presidential runoff on May 7.