Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Brexit opens door for Macron to push for greater European integration

Read more

THE DEBATE

Macron's marching orders: New French President's first EU summit

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Handling the heatwave

Read more

FOCUS

South Sudan: A rare look at both sides of the civil war

Read more

PEOPLE & PROFIT

Paris Air Show: Big plane builders face increasing competition

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Former UK police chief: 'We are facing disorganised terrorism'

Read more

ENCORE!

Diana Krall: 'I find romance in everything'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Saudi Arabia's 'Prince of Chaos'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Macron's government, take two: 'Reviewed and corrected'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

Latest update : 2011-03-22

Sarkozy faces the National Front

In today's French papers - Sarkozy falls out with Prime Minister François Fillon over how to win votes back from the National Front, France and the US can't agree on who should be in charge of the intervention in Libya, and fears are spreading over whether Japanese nuclear radiation could reach France.

Aujourd’hui en France headlines this morning on division within Sarkozy’s government on how to face the right-wing threat – the paper points out it seems to be FN leader Marine Le Pen who’s driving governmentpolicy, with President Sarkozy recently announcing a national debate on the role of Islam in France which seems to play right into Le Pen’s hands – the paper’s cartoon has Sarkozy asking his ministers if they should perhaps organize a debate about the role of the UMP instead.

The FN can look forward to at least a dozen local councillors being elected at the second round this weekend, the paper says – that’s at a level where they have none at the moment.

But the FN’s success seems to have taken some of its candidates by surprise themselves – the party registered candidates in every district, even those thought to be completely unwinnable – and Le Parisien interviews one of those candidates – a 93-year-old, in a nursing home, who apparently didn’t even know his name was on the ballot paper.

The paper points out there’s a division in the government between Prime Minister François Fillon, who’s told supporters to vote Socialist to keep the National Front out – and President Sarkozy who say they should vote for neither – that also leads today’s Liberation – it’s an important debate as the FN will be facing off against the Socialists in this weekend’s second round in over two hundred districts where the UMP has already been knocked out of the contests.

France’s Socialists famously held their noses and voted for Jacques Chirac in 2002 when Marine’s father Jean-Marie Le Pen got to the second round of the presidential election. Should Sarkozy supporters do the same? The paper thinks so.

Their editorial says the right should take responsibility for demonising Muslims and allowing Le Pen to make her electoral breakthrough.

Same story at France Soir - ‘Fillon opposes Sarkozy over National Front ’ – they say Sarkozy keeps moving further to the right, at the risk of playing straight into Marine Le Pen’s hands and splitting his own party – they say the party has got into a lose-lose situation with the Socialists and the FN picking off their voters from both sides.

Communist paper l’Humanité says it’s the left that must face up to its responsibilities now and get the vote out so that the National Front doesn’t pick up dozens of seats across the country – while Catholic paper La Croix says the result is a national shame. It points out turnout was low and voters seem to be rejecting traditional parties across the political spectrum – so both the left and right need to find a way to get those voters back – because the National Front seems to be getting through to working class voters where other parties can’t.

Libya of course isn’t off the French front pages either – Le Figaro leads on divisions within the coalition of the willing – saying Italy has threatened to close its air bases to coalition planes unless the operation comes under NATO control.

Les Echos on the other hand has the Japanese nuclear disaster on the front page again today – and the paper raises the fear radioactive fallout could reach as far as France.

That’s worrying the regional press as well – local paper Courrier Picard has ‘The radioactive cloud is coming our way’ on the front page – of course it’s very unlikely any nuclear fallout could reach France and the paper does point that out – but it doesn’t stop them recommending readers stock up on iodine and avoid eating anything grown in Japan.

And finally Franck Ribéry’s return to the French national team with his tail between his legs makes all the papers today – he’s apologized for going on strike during last year’s World Cup- Le Parisien says it’s either touching or ridiculous – or both at once – but the sports writers can’t quite decide which.

By Elena CASAS

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2017-06-22 Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia's 'Prince of Chaos'

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Thurs. 22.06.17: The Washington Post gets a glimpse of the Senate Republican plan to replace the Affordable Care Act - criticised as a "stingier" version...

Read more

2017-06-22 Emmanuel Macron

Macron's government, take two: 'Reviewed and corrected'

FRENCH PRESS - Thurs. 22.06.2017: The re-appointment of the French government following legislative elections is usually just a formality, but Emmanuel Macron had to make several...

Read more

2017-06-21 Portugal

Portugal's papers soul-searching after deadly fires

IN THE WORLD PAPERS - Thursday, June 21: Portuguese papers are soul-searching today as they try to make sense of devastating fires that have killed dozens of people. Also, the...

Read more

2017-06-20 Syria

'The Finsbury Park imam's heroism shows where London can find its strength'

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Tues. 20.06.17: Papers around the world focus on tensions between Washington and Moscow after a US pilot shot down a Syrian regime jet over the weekend....

Read more

2017-06-20 French Legislative Elections 2017

Younger, more feminine: France's parliament gets a facelift

FRENCH PAPERS - Tues. 20.06.17: French papers focus on the aftermath of Sunday’s second round of the parliamentary elections and what the new French Parliament is going to look...

Read more