Paris, July 5 IANS | 4 months ago

Two in three French voters feel they will not back embattled ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy in the 2017 presidential election in 2017 amid corruption probe, a survey revealed Saturday.

According to a BVA poll for the news channel I tele and the daily Le Parisien, 65 percent of respondents did not want to see the conservative politician competing in the race to the Elysee, Xinhua reported.

Seventy percent of French people said Sarkozy would present his candidacy despite the ongoing investigation on his use of influence to get information about a separate inquiry into charges that late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi funded his 2007 election campaign after judges have been authorised to tap his phone.

In his first interview since losing presidential race in 2012, Sarkozy said: "The question of whether I give up or not is irrelevant, because one has a duty and rights towards their country.

"I am concerned by the situation in France, the state of France and I know of the worries of the French and their suffering."

"After a long period of reflexion, I have to decide what I should do at the end of August or beginning of September," he added.

Last Wednesday, the former head of state was placed under formal investigation for "corruption, influence-peddling and concealment of violation of professional secret," after being in custody for 15 hours a day before.

Having lost immunity from legal prosecution a month after he left office in June 2012, he could be jailed for up to 10 years and pay a fine up to 500,000 euros (approx. 680,000 dollars) in second such judicial probe after Bettencourt affair.

(Posted on 05-07-2014)

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