1. FRANCE

    Sarkozy Announces Reelection Bid

    French President Nicolas Sarkozy adjusts his microphone prior to announce his re-election bid and launchs the official start of his election campaign as he takes part in the broadcast news of French TV channel TF1 in Boulogne-Billancourt, outside Paris. Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012. French President Nicolas Sarkozy says he will run for another five-year term in elections starting in April. (AP Photo/Lionel Bonaventure, Pool)

    Lionel Bonaventure, Pool / AP Photo

    French President Nicolas Sarkozy officially entered the 2012 race in a televised interview Wednesday night after delaying the announcement for months. “I am a candidate for the presidential election,” Sarkozy responded to a point-blank question, silencing a growing murmur about whether he would run for reelection. Polls have consistently shown Sarkozy, who is deeply unpopular with the French public, trailing socialist challenger François Hollande. A spokesman for the Parti Socialiste brushed off the announcement. “When Nicolas Sarkozy speaks, there are no flashing red lights, it’s just another mundane event.”

    Read it at France 24