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IN THE PRESS

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 : 2011-07-29

Frenchifying McDonald's

One of France's leading papers headlines on an investigation into the Air France Rio-Paris crash in 2009, only to get a rap on the knuckles from the investigating body for jumping to conclusions. Also, an exclusive interview with the father of Anders Behring Breivik, and a look at how McDonald's in France is bowing to the baguette. That's the focus for this French press review, Friday 29th July 2011.

Le Figaro says it has had a look of parts of a report – a third – presented today on what happened two years ago in the Air France flight from Rio to Paris. The finger, the paper says, points to pilot error. It reports that pilot number one on AF447 was on a rest break and not in the cabin and the co-pilot left in charge handled the loss of auto-pilot badly after the plane stalled. The paper says this report will indicate that the crew lacked the training needed to avert the crash, which killed 228 people. The body carrying out the investigation has slammed Le Figaro’s coverage, saying it should not confuse the circumstances of the accident with its cause.

La Depeche du Midi, in southern France, talks to the father of Anders Behring Breivik, the far-right killer in Norway. 76-year-old Jens Breivik moved to the Aude region of southwestern France earlier this year. The former diplomat says his son is a terrorist and he never wants to see him again. They last met when Anders Behring Breivik was fifteen. Jens Breivik says his neighbours have been good to him, offering to do his shopping and saying they will stand by him as he fends off media interest. He says his interview with the paper will be his last to the press.

Le Monde, too, is looking at the trauma of horror in Norway. Its correspondent in Oslo talks to 18-year-old left-wing activist, Helle Gannestad, who has inspired Norwegians with her words in a tweet: “If one man is capable of so much hate, think of the love we can generate together.” Gannestad wasn’t at the summer camp for the ruling Labour Party's youth wing, although she has been to ones in the past.

The French left-wing daily Libération reports on a rehearsal at another Socialist summer camp of sorts. This time a peaceful one in the south of France. It reports that 50 Socialist Party activists cast their ballot in a dry run for the party’s primaries in October. They had to choose among historic figures in French socialism, including Leon Blum, Jean Jaures and Pierre Mendes-France. There was no vote count. The goal was to see if the process of casting the ballot would go smoothly.

And Le Figaro looks at the Frenchification of an American institution with a story: “La baguette fait son entrée chez McDonald’s”. There will be a typical French breakfast of a slice of baguette with butter and jam at McDonald's from September, and a sandwich made with a baguette from early next year. And that, the paper says, will be a worry for bakers here in France.

By Nicholas RUSHWORTH

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