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Week in Review

Week in Review: Libya's rebel commander, eco activist Greta Thunberg addresses France's parliament & toxic algae in Brittany


FRANCE 24 looks at Libya's rebel commander Khalifa Haftar; Eco activist Greta Thunberg addresses the French parliament as tonnes of toxic green algae swamp Brittany's beaches.



In northern Indian villages, girls are never born

Authorities in a northern India state launched an investigation this week to uncover why no girls were reportedly born in 132 villages over three months. The reasons behind the statistics are an open secret, but there is little will to tackle the problem.

Forward-thinking Essebsi stopped short of achieving gender equality in Tunisia

Tunisia's Beji Caid Essebsi, who died on Thursday, came out of retirement to serve as the country's first democratically elected president after the country’s 2011 revolution. He will also be remembered as a proponent of equality for women.

French govt reports clear ex-environment minister de Rugy of over-spending

Two reports released Tuesday cleared the former No. 2 in the French government of excessive spending a week after François de Rugy resigned as environment minister.

As France simmers, prisoners struggle to cope with the heatwave

As the second heatwave of the summer of 2019 hits France, NGOs warn that prisoners are being forced to endure stifling temperatures in overcrowded cells.

Young ecologist Greta Thunberg addresses French parliament

Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg, 16, spoke before France's lower house of parliament as she continues her campaign for action on climate change. But French conservative parties denounced her appearance as an emotional ploy.

Louvre removes Sackler name amid controversy over opioid crisis

Paris's Louvre Museum has become the first major cultural institution to remove the Sackler family name from its premises after a series of protests against the family blamed for the deadly opioid crisis in the United States.


Libya: Nations divided over support for rebel commander Khalifa Haftar

Libyan rebel commander Khalifa Haftar launched an offensive in early April to seize control of Libya’s capital Tripoli, where the UN-recognised Government of National Accord led by Fayez al-Sarraj is based. Since then, the UN has struggled to maintain a fragile ceasefire in the country, which descended into chaos after the overthrow of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

Sea of sludge: the toxic algae swamping Brittany’s beaches

A favourite of summer holidaymakers, the bay of Saint-Brieuc in northwest France has been swamped by tonnes of toxic green algae, dealing a blow to a region that hoped to have put the noxious – and potentially lethal – scourge behind it.


Frosty welcome? Greta Thunberg visits France

Teen climate activist Greta Thunberg visited France this week where she delivered an address to lawmakers at the country’s National Assembly (lower house). But some right-wing MPs chose to stay away, dismissing the 16-year-old Swede as the “Justin Bieber of ecology” and a "prophetess in shorts”.



Melinda Gates: 'In Africa, digital financial inclusion for women is fundamental'

During a meeting of G7 finance ministers and central bank governors in Chantilly near Paris last week, Melinda Gates presented a report on the digital financial inclusion of women in Africa. The co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation told FRANCE 24 that accessing digital financial services is not only "fundamental" to empowering African women but also to boosting the global economy.

'Humans will go to Mars,' European Space Agency chief tells FRANCE 24

To mark the 50th anniversary of the lunar landing, FRANCE 24 spoke to Johann-Dietrich Wörner, the director general of the European Space Agency, about the legacy of Apollo 11. "I don't want to go back to the Moon, I want to go forward to the Moon," he said. Wörner also predicted that astronauts will land on the red planet, Mars. Finally, he emphasised the importance of international cooperation in space: "The beauty of space today is that we are really [going] beyond the earthly crises."


Film show: The Lion King is 'the most ideologically coherent Hollywood defence of monarchy'

The week in film news, including "The Lion King", Luc Besson's "Anna" and the re-release of Terrence Mallick’s sumptuous "Days of Heaven".

French town of Arles celebrates 50 years of photography

Every year, the southern French town of Arles becomes the world's photography capital and welcomes more than 140,000 visitors. "Les Rencontres d'Arles" is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. FRANCE 24 went to the festival and met Greek photographer Evangelia Kranioti, who tolds us more about her exhibition, "The living, the dead and those at sea". We also focus on the women who are breaking the glass ceiling in photography.

Music show: The sounds of summer 2019

From Lizzo and Aya Nakamura to Mark Ronson and Angel Olsen (plus Ed Sheeran), FRANCE 24 brings you the sounds of summer 2019 in our music show.


Why is the EU-Canada free trade deal so controversial?

French MPs ratified the CETA free trade deal between Canada and the European Union this week despite calls from former environment minister Nicolas Hulot for lawmakers to reject the deal. President Emmanuel Macron has described the agreement as a step in the right direction.


Haute Couture, winter 2019/2020: Digital innovation no substitute for couture workshops

To celebrate its 10th anniversary, French fashion house Julien Fournié is unveiling its sponsors, Apple and Dassault Systems. But that's not to suggest that the digital world can supplant the extraordinary work of the couture workshops, producing unique piece after unique piece. Alexandre Vauthier takes a similar view. As for Jean-Paul Gaultier, he's breaking with the past and choosing to stay away from fur. But then again, the only constant with Gaultier is change.


Iraq: On the fault line of rising US-Iran tensions

Amid rising tensions between the US and Iran, Iraq risks becoming a proxy battlefield if the crisis continues. That prospect became palpable last month, when several rockets hit US interests across Iraq with no one claiming responsibility. Meanwhile, Baghdad is stepping up efforts to assert its authority over Iraqi armed groups, which are accused of having links to Iran. Our reporters gained exclusive access to a training camp for one such group.

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