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Jacques Chirac: Huge queues in Paris as France pays tribute

Visitors, many of them carrying umbrellas, stand close to the entrance of Les Invalides in Paris on 29 September 2019.

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AFP

Thousands of people have been queuing in Paris to see the coffin of former President Jacques Chirac, as France observes a day of national mourning.

At times the queue outside the Invalides memorial complex was 1km (1.6 miles) long despite the rain.

President Emmanuel Macron and his three living predecessors will attend a memorial service for Chirac, who died last week at the age of 86.

He served two terms as president and twice as prime minister.

The queue of well-wishers stretched around the Hôtel des Invalides, where people had been gathering throughout the weekend.

Mr Chirac, a conservative, has been hailed by Mr Macron as a “great Frenchman”.

During his first presidential term (1995-2002), he took France into the single European currency. At the start of his second term (2002-2007), he spearheaded international opposition to the US-led invasion of Iraq.

His later years were blighted by corruption scandals, including a conviction related to his time as mayor of Paris and allegations he was given briefcases of cash by African leaders – which he strenuously denied.

People wait to attend a public ceremony in homage to former French President Jacques Chirac on 29 September 2019.

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AFP

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Visitors wait to view the coffin of former French President Jacques Chirac on 29 September 2019.

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EPA

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Many were seen with umbrellas, undeterred by the wet weather.

People queue to say a final farewell to former French President Jacques Chirac on 29 September 2019.

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AFP

Visitors wait to view the coffin of former French President Jacques Chirac as it lies in state in the Invalides on 29 September 2019.

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EPA

Former President Jacques Chirac’s coffin lies in state inside the Invalides, draped in France’s tricolore flag.

It is to be transferred to the church of Saint Sulpice later on Monday for the funeral service.

The coffin of former French President Jacques Chirac lies in state in front of a photograph of the late statesman, in the Invalides 29 September 2019.

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EPA

Servicemen look at people queuing to say a final farewell to former French President Jacques Chirac on 29 September 2019.

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AFP

Media captionJacques Chirac: Key moments in his life

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Jacques Chirac: Huge queues in Paris as France pays tribute

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