French former prime minister and centre-right politician Dominique de Villepin has announced he will stand for president in the 2012 election. The long-time rival of incumbent President Nicolas Sarkozy made his announcement on French TV.
His candidacy will certainly annoy the president because he will take away precious votes in the first round of the election at the end of April, the BBC's Hugh Schofield reports from Paris.
But it is hard to see him as a serious contender as many of his former friends and allies have moved over to President Sarkozy's camp, our correspondent adds.
Furthermore, he has just been named in a corruption enquiry, accused of putting pressure on a businessman not to give information to the police that might implicate one of his friends.