Former French prime minister François Fillon (pictured) has once again exposed bitter divisions within the country's main opposition UMP party after announcing he would run in the 2017 presidential race 'whatever happens'.
FRENCH PAPERS, Fri. 10/05/13: French papers react to François Fillon’s announcement that he plans to run in the 2017 presidential election "no matter what". Also, Libération investigates the use of chemical weapons in Syria and L’Humanité takes a closer look at Chairman Mao’s controversial granddaughter.
François Fillon announces while in Japan that he will be a candidate for the French presidential election in 2017, "no matter what". In other words, he is playing hardball with the other hopefuls, Nicholas Sarkozy and Jean-François Copé. Also, an academic boycott of Israel gets the support of physicist Stephen Hawking and in Senegal, they rap the news!
The government had been adamant: there would be no more taxes in 2014. But now it says it needs to find an extra 6 billion euros. Also this week: François Fillon, who was Nicolas Sarkozy's prime minister for 5 years, announces his intention to run for president in 2017, a move that could hurt Sarkozy's own chances of a comeback.
Although the mayor of Paris, Bertrand Delanoë, is not due to leave office for another year, the race to fill the coveted seat is already in full swing as France’s political elite vie for the prestigious position.
Will Nicolas Sarkozy stage a comeback in French politics? The former president is keeping quiet, but others are talking for him, including one of his party's top leaders. Also this week, after the surprise resignation of the Pope, the French president's reaction has sparked controversy. This as the relationship between the Socialists and the Church is already being tested by the vote on a bill legalising same-sex marriage and adoption.
What has changed since France elected its first Socialist president in nearly a quarter of a century? The government has pledged an unprecedented 30 billion euros in belt-tightening, but it'll take a lot more than that to dent the deficit. Meanwhile, unemployment has continued to rise while growth has remained anaemic. Has politics in this country really changed in the nine months since election day?
On the menu today: our top story of 2012: the first Socialist elected president in nearly a quarter century. François Hollande ousting incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy.The honeymoon didn't last long though for Hollande and his government whose popularity has plummeted steadily since inauguration day back in May. It may be cold comfort for the Socialists but Sarkozy's succession has torn the opposition UMP between supporters of Jean-François Copé and François Fillon.
The French village of Bugarach is the place to be if you believe that the world will end on December 21st - we take a look. Meanwhile, in politics, the hatchet seems to have been buried between UMP rivals Fillon and Copé. Finally, we put on our ballet shoes on to follow Paris's "little rats".
IN THE FRENCH PAPERS, 18/12/12: Le Parisien/Aujourd’hui en France focuses on how struggling households are coping this winter. No less than 600,000 families who are having difficulty paying their bills face gas and electricity cuts. Meanwhile, in Le Figaro, Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders says Belgium's arms are open to tax exiles. And Christian paper La Croix explores the burning topic of euthanasia.