Just three months after storming out of the Government, former Premier Jacques Chirac returned to the French political scene on Sunday (5 December).
GV Chirac entering hall to cheers from crowd
SV New emblem PAN TO Chirac waving to crowd
SV Chirac addressing crowd
CU Chirac listening as crowd cheers (2 shots)
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Background: Just three months after storming out of the Government, former Premier Jacques Chirac returned to the French political scene on Sunday (5 December).
SYNOPSIS: Thousands of Gaullist supporters gave M. Chirac a hero's welcome. The former Prime Minister was unanimously elected president of the Rassemblement pour la Republique, the R.P.R. The new movement was created out of the old Uniones des Democrates pour la Republique, the U.D.R.
More than 50,000 Gaullists roared their support for M. Chirac when he climaxed the rally with an hour-long speech criticising the Socialist-Communist opposition alliance. He said that despite the good intentions of Socialist-Communist supporters, these principles have never been put into practice and freedom has disappeared. M. Chirac said his movement would remain in the ruling Government coalition. Gaullism has dominated French Governments from 1958 until 1974.
According to Reuters, the deliberate omission of President Giscard D'Estaing's name from the speeches posed an obvious challenge to the President's authority and to his position of overall Government majority leader. The conference accepted by an almost unanimous vote and set of structures and a manifesto for the Chirac movement. It will devote itself to keeping the Socialist-Communist alliance out of power. M. Chirac said, amid prolonged cheers, "I'm not going to criticise here those regimes which have thought that this type of society suited their people. I simply say tat it does not suit France."