Born in Tangiers, Morocco in 1951,Jean-Luc Melénchon has been the surprise package of the French presidential campaign.
The former Trotskyite, who wants France out of NATO saw support surge after the presidential TV debate.
He graduated in philosphy from the University of Besançon in 1972 and worked as a teacher and a journalist before joining the Socialist Party in 1976.
Melénchon served briefly as Minister of Vocational Education under the Socialist government of Lionel Jospin and as a member of the French Senate.
He left the party in 2008 to form the ‘Parti de gauche’.
Despite being a member European parliament since 2009, the veteran leftist is hugely critical of the EU.
He views it as a vehicle for neo-liberal economics to the detriment of ordinary people.
His supporters do not want to destroy the EU they want to save it and they see this election as the last opportunity to do so.
In February 2016 he launched La France insoumise whose main tool is an interactive internet platform.
electoral campaign he has won the support of many young people, who like his leftist platform and his use of the latest tech.
Mélenchon has created a web TV, a web radio, and is ubiquitous on social networks he has also used a hologram as a way to surprise voters.
Melénchon applied for the Elysee in the 2012 presidential campaign
where he finished fourth in the first round with 11% of the vote.
Since then he reshaped his political programme to incorporate environmental themes.
Discreet about his private life, he recently dismissed the question with a joke: “If I’m elected, you will not have a Première Dame, because I’m single, so I’ll be a less expensive president.”