PARIS (Reuters) - French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde will visit Brazil on Monday as part of a campaign to win backing for her candidacy as head the International Monetary Fund, a source close to the minister said on Saturday.
The post of IMF managing director is open after Frenchman Dominique Strauss-Kahn resigned following his arrest on May 14 on charges of attempting to rape a New York hotel maid. He denies the charges and has vowed to clear his name.
"She will be in Brazil on Monday," the source said.
Lagarde, who officially joined the race for the top job in global finance on Wednesday, is the favorite, with backing from Europe.
She looks close to securing support from the United States and Russia but faces reticence from newer powers like Brazil and China which have criticized EU officials for suggesting the new head must be a European.
The only other declared candidate is Mexican Central Bank Governor Agustin Carstens.
(Reporting by Jean-Baptiste Vey; Writing by Helen Massy-Beresford; editing by Elizabeth Piper)