France's far right National Front party leader Marine Le Pen
Marine Le Pen Reuters

France's National Front (FN) leader Marine Le Pen said she will vote blank in Sunday's presidential election run-off vote.

Le Pen, who obtained a record 17.9 percent of the vote in the first round of the election, told a mass rally in Paris that she could support neither President Nicolas Sarkozy nor the socialist candidate Francois Hollande.

She told supporters who had gathered in memory of far-right icon Joan of Arc to "follow their conscience". Marine Le Pen's 6.5 million votes were more than those received by her father and FN founder Jean-Marie Le Pen, who in 2002 won his way into the second-round run-off with 17 percent of votes.

"We have become the centre of gravity for French politics," she said.

Marine Le Pen's campaign focused on immigration and what she has called the "Islamisation of France". She said a "great project of emancipation" had begun and nothing would be the same again.

Le Pen criticised Sarkozy's recent policy, saying it had contradicted his actions over his five-year term.

Nicolas Sarkozy said recently that he does not hold anything against National Front voters.

"I say to them: I've heard you.The French don't want to be dispossessed of their way of life. That's the message I heard, and I will take to the second round of the election.

"All European leaders must hear the rise in the world of a crisis vote. I don't like the term 'populism'," he added.

"I see this vote as a cry of suffering, the expression of revolt. I can see that on the left, they are holding their noses, they don't understand.

"Countries that succeed are those that respect the nation and national identity."

Meanwhile, unions are marching to the capital's Place de la Bastille without Hollande to celebrate May Day, who will be attending a memorial in central France for former prime minister Pierre Beregovoy.

Sarkozy 's UMP party met at the Trocadero in the name of the exposure of private sector workers to the economic crisis, opposing to those public sector workers who are on strike.

He harshly criticised union leader Bernard Thibault after he called for a vote against him saying he betrayed "the cause of unionism".