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Noah, Tsonga and three other tennis players sign a letter against Marine Le Pen, calling for diverse, inclusive sport

In a letter published on Le Parisien and France Info, some 50 French sportsmen and women have called for a vote for Emmanuel Macron in the second round of the presidential election

Yannick Noah, 2019 © Panoramic

As the second round of the presidential election looms in France (24 April), 50 top sportsmen and women have decided to take a stand against Marine Le Pen ahead of her face-off against Emmanuel Macron: among them personalities from the world of tennis like Yannick Noah, Jo Wilfried Tsonga, Isabelle Demongeot, Mickaël Jeremiasz (paratennis) and Stéphane Houdet (paratennis).

These five athletes, along with other famous names such as Tony Parker (basketball), Marie-José Pérec (athletics), and Blaide Matuidi (football) announced their intention to vote for Emmanuel Macron in an article published in Le Parisien and France Info, which stresses that their vision of sport is incompatible with the values that Marine Le Pen intends to bring to power.

They write and sign the following text: “We, French sportsmen and women from all walks of life and all disciplines, cannot imagine that this historic moment will be marked by the seal of a far-right president. We are fully aware of the difficulties that many French people are going through, but we are convinced that voting for a party that would endanger republican values would be the worst remedy. The Olympic sport and values in which we believe is made of friendship and respect; it is the place of diversity. It refuses all forms of discrimination.

It is because we believe in this sport, which is fraternal and inclusive, that we are committed to preventing our nation from placing at its head a president who embodies the very opposite

“Everywhere on the ground, in our cities, our suburbs and our countryside, sport is a powerful remedy to exclusion. In these uncertain times, it is a vector for bringing people together. This is the case when a whole nation remembers that it is ONE by sharing the excitement in unison behind the exploits of its athletes. It is because we believe in this sport, which is fraternal and inclusive, that we are committed to preventing our nation from placing at its head a president who embodies the very opposite, the stigmatisation of the other, withdrawal into oneself, nationalism. And we therefore call for a vote for Emmanuel Macron on 24 April.”

Marine Le Pen had not reacted to this tribune on Wednesday evening.

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