Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

YOU ARE HERE

The chandelier, master of light

Read more

FRENCH CONNECTIONS

Vive le vin! Understanding France’s love of wine

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Amnesty accuses Sudan of chemical attacks on civilians

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Trump accuses Google of 'suppressing bad news about Clinton'

Read more

THE DEBATE

What's the deal with oil? Saudi Arabia's about-face on OPEC (part 2)

Read more

THE DEBATE

What's the deal with oil? Saudi Arabia's about-face on OPEC (part 1)

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Nations vote to end all trade of endangered pangolins

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Dublin courts post-Brexit business

Read more

FOCUS

Afghanistan's national unity government faces political deadlock

Read more

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.

IN THE PAPERS

IN THE PAPERS

Latest update : 2011-09-16

Is Sarkozy just a hero for a day?

Cameron and Sarkozy on walkabout in Libya. The French press focuses on a historic moment for the European leaders amid reflections it could be too early for a victory lap. Sarkozy's media win, meanwhile, is the Socialists' loss. Their prime-time TV debate got a lot less coverage and was largely panned. That's the focus for this look at the French papers, Friday September 16th 2011.

President Nicolas Sarkozy’s trip with British Prime Minister David Cameron to Libya grabs the headlines. Le Figaro leads: “Sarkozy and Cameron” welcomed as liberators. It remarks: "who would have imagined a year ago that Nicolas Sarkozy would be going to Benghazi as a hero". The paper wonders though how long the pro-French mood will last. Le Figaro editorial writer Pierre Rousselin says Sarkozy adopted the tone of former French President Charles de Gaulle when he said France would support “all Arab peoples wanting to throw off their chains”. But again the question arises: is this too soon? Is Sarkozy just a hero for a day? Can he be the real initiator of cross-Mediterranean ties in the long-term? The paper’s correspondent in Benghazi ,Renaud Girard, quotes a resident saying: “We owe our freedom to Sarkozy”. Girard concludes that Libya will split along secular and Islamist lines and, at a certain point, Paris will have to choose between one or the other and “that is when the real problems will begin”.

Left-wing daily Libération says Nicolas Sarkozy walked around just as if he was at home: "Sarkozy parade en Libye comme chez lui". That headline is somewhat damning in tone but the rest of its coverage is fairly tame in terms of criticism of the French president. The paper says he was determined to be the first head of state in Tripoli since Gaddafi fled. Its quote of choice, along with other papers, is: “People of Libya you have shown your courage and you must now show another kind of courage, the courage of forgiveness and reconciliation.”

The paper also looks at the plight of French hostages held in neighbouring Niger. Four out of five are still being held exactly a year after being taken captive. One hostage was released in February. They are being held by AQIM, al Qaeda in the Islamic Mahgreb.

The Socialist Primary TV debates were judged lacklustre and boring in much of the press. The six candidates held back from savaging each other. Libération says viewers had to wait till 10.50 pm before Martine Aubry changed tone, targetting François Hollande on employment policy. Le Parisien-Aujourd’hui-en-France says it was “très, trés sage": “very, very tame”. And the paper wonders whether it was too timid and quotes one Socialist Party member saying the discussion hadn’t made her change her mind about who to choose.

By Nicholas RUSHWORTH

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2016-09-29 Syria

Between darkness and fear: Bombs rain down in Aleppo

IN THE INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Thursday, September 29: The press is looking at the situation in Aleppo after two hospitals were reduced to rubble. This as the standoff between the...

Read more

2016-09-29 Shimon Peres

Shimon Peres: From Hawk to Dove

IN THE FRENCH PAPERS - Thursday, September 29: Was Shimon Peres a man of peace or war? French papers dedicate their front pages to the death of the Israeli statesman, while...

Read more

2016-09-28 Shimon Peres

Shimon Peres’ Quixotic battle for Israeli-Palestinian peace

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Weds. 28.09.16: Israeli papers pay tribute to former president and prime minister Shimon Peres. According to the Jerusalem Post, "in his 93 years, Shimon...

Read more

2016-09-28 Nicolas Sarkozy

Sarkozy's friends, ongoing cases, bothers

FRENCH PAPERS - Weds. 28.09.16: Former President Nicolas Sarkozy is in the spotlight. One of his former advisors, Patrick Buisson, is set to publish a tell-all book and seems to...

Read more

2016-09-27 Hillary Clinton

'The first debate featured an unprepared man repeatedly shouting over a highly prepared woman'

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Tues. 27.09.16: US papers focus on who won the first presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Most analysts tend to think Clinton won...

Read more