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Tens of thousands of leftists march in Paris to denounce president's policies as austerity

  • dcbbdba31946fd0f300f6a706700bd18.jpg

    Leader of the French leftist party, Jean Luc Melenchon, delivers a speech before a rally to protest against the austerity measures announced by the French government, in Paris, Sunday, May 5, 2012. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler)The Associated Press

  • fecfc76f194afd0f300f6a70670066ab.jpg

    Leader of the French leftist party, Jean Luc Melenchon, smiles before a rally to protest against the austerity measures announced by the French government, in Paris, Sunday, May 5, 2012. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler)The Associated Press

  • 7707b87c1947fd0f300f6a7067009f5a.jpg

    Leader of the French leftist party, Jean Luc Melenchon, delivers a speech before a rally to protest against the austerity measures announced by the French government, in Paris, Sunday, May 5, 2012. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler)The Associated Press

  • 155fe7271947fd0f300f6a706700276c.jpg

    Leader of the French leftist party, Jean Luc Melenchon, delivers a speech before a rally to protest against the austerity measures announced by the French government, in Paris, Sunday, May 5, 2012. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler)The Associated Press

Tens of thousands of supporters of leftist parties are marching through central Paris to express disappointment with President Francois Hollande's first year in power, criticizing the leader for reneging on his promises to rein in the world of finance and enact economic stimulus.

Hollande, a Socialist, won the presidency last May, promising to spare France the austerity measures enacted elsewhere in Europe. He has raised taxes, especially on the rich, and made limited cuts to spending.

France's economy has continued to deteriorate, with growth stagnating and unemployment rising well above 10 percent. Hollande now has the lowest popularity rating of any post-war president.

Supporters of French leftist parties, which together call themselves the Left Front, marched through Paris on Sunday to call on Hollande to change his policies.