Emmanuel Macron set out a raft of policies Tuesday to fight poverty and religious extremism in downtrodden French neighbourhoods in a riposte to critics who have labelled him a "president of the rich".


And he said government failures were partly to blame for Islamic radicalisation in depressed immigrant suburbs which has resulted in hundreds of young men setting off to join jihadists in Syria and Iraq.

"In these neighbourhoods we have closed schools, cut aid for the oldest and youngest, and other groups have arrived touting solutions for all of that," he said, pointing to ultra-conservative Muslim associations.

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