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Carla Bruni-Sarkozy Hit With Her Own Charges

Carla Bruni-Sarkozy is accused of witness tampering in case involving ex-President Nicolas Sarkozy

(Newser) - Former supermodel and French first lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy received preliminary charges Tuesday for involvement in alleged efforts to pressure a witness who accused ex-President Nicolas Sarkozy of receiving illegal campaign financing from Libya. Bruni-Sarkozy was placed under judicial supervision on Tuesday, which included a ban on contact with all those...

Pistols Napoleon Planned to Use to End His Life Are Sold

They were auctioned for $1.8M

(Newser) - As the story goes, French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte intended to shoot himself on April 12, 1814, after he was forced to abdicate. But the BBC reports his grand squire, Armand de Caulaincourt, emptied Napoleon's two pistols of their gunpowder; he instead consumed poison but vomited and survived. Those pistols...

Macron Won't Accept PM's Resignation After Shock Elections

It's a 'government in limbo' in France, with no coalition claiming enough seats to assume control

(Newser) - After a surprising turn in France's snap elections that kept the far-right National Rally out of power , but with no faction in complete control of the government, President Emmanuel Macron made moves on Monday to attempt to create some structure as the dust settles. First order of the day:...

French Version of Excalibur Is Missing

Legends say Durandal was embedded in rock for 1.3K years

(Newser) - The French equivalent of Excalibur has been stolen—but unlike the sword in the legend of King Arthur, whoever pulled the Durandal sword from a rock is more likely to be proclaimed a thief than a true king. The sword is missing, believed stolen from the village of Rocamadour, where...

In This Nation, Getting to Work Takes Just 17 Minutes

Denmark boasts shortest commute time in the world, per AHTI Games stats

(Newser) - Looking for the shortest, sweetest commute? Consider Scandinavia. That's per AHTI Games, which crunched the numbers to figure out how long it takes to get from home to work across the globe, per Digital Journal . Denmark tops the list, with an average commute time of just 17 minutes. Neighbor...

French Director Charged With Raping 2 Women

Actress says Benoit Jacquot groomed her when she was 16, he was 52

(Newser) - French film director Benoit Jacquot has been charged with rape and banned from directing minors or having any other contact with them. The 77-year-old was charged Wednesday with raping actresses Julia Roy, 34, and Isild Le Besco, 41, years ago, the New York Times reports. Jacquot was charged with raping...

France as We Know It Looks Set to Change
France as We Know It
Looks Set to Change
the rundown

France as We Know It Looks Set to Change

Marine Le Pen's National Rally took the lead in the first round of legislative elections

(Newser) - France's National Rally surged into the lead in the first round of legislative elections, according to results released early Monday, bringing the far-right party to the brink of power and dealing a major blow to President Emmanuel Macron's centrists in an election that could set the country, and...

Far Right Swamping Macron's Centrists So Far

Projections show president's party could come in a distant third in elections' first round

(Newser) - France's high-stakes legislative elections propelled the far-right National Rally to a strong but not decisive lead in the first-round vote Sunday, polling agencies projected. At this rate, President Emmanuel Macron's grouping of centrist parties could finish a distant third in the first-round ballot, the AP reports. That alliance...

Marcon's Gamble Draws Heavy Turnout
Macron's Gamble Draws
Heavy Turnout

Macron's Gamble Draws Heavy Turnout

Elections could leave president weakened by far right or left and the nation in political deadlock

(Newser) - Voter turnout in France on Sunday was running historically high—reflecting the stakes and interest in elections that could weaken Emmanuel Macron's presidency and have major effects on domestic and foreign policy. All 577 seats in the lower and more critical house of Parliament are up for grabs. Macron...

Woman Attacked Running Through Wolf Enclosure at French Zoo

She apparently entered a restricted area while staying at a lodge

(Newser) - A woman staying at a lodge at a French zoo ended up jogging through the safari zone, where she was attacked by three wolves. The 37-year-old was staying with family at a lodge within Thoiry safari park and zoo 25 miles west of Paris when she was attacked on Sunday....

Reported Rape of Child Renews Antisemitism as Election Issue

Far-right party leads in polls ahead of French voting

(Newser) - The reported rape of a 12-year-old Jewish girl in a suspected antisemitic attack has sent shockwaves throughout France and brought concerns about antisemitism to the forefront of campaigning for legislative elections. The anti-immigration National Rally party, which has tried to shed historical links to antisemitism, is leading in pre-election polling...

French Crowds Protest Rise of Far Right

Left-wing parties form coalition despite differences on wars

(Newser) - Anti-racism groups joined French unions and a brand-new left-wing coalition in protests in Paris and across France on Saturday against the surging nationalist far right, with frenzied campaigning having begun ahead of snap parliamentary elections . The French Interior Ministry said 250,000 people turned out to protest, 75,000 of...

With Olympic Water Sports Looming, Bad News on Seine

River in Paris has levels of E. coli bacteria that are beyond limits determined to be safe for humans

(Newser) - Water in the Seine had unsafe elevated levels of E. coli less than two months before swimming competitions are scheduled to take place in it during the Paris Olympics, according to test results published Friday. Contamination levels in the first eight days of June, after persistent heavy rain in Paris,...

Macron's Gamble Likened to 'Russian Roulette'
Macron's Stunner
Gives France
a Stark Choice
the rundown

Macron's Stunner Gives France a Stark Choice

'Do you really want to be governed by the far right?' is how one analysis frames his gamble

(Newser) - The sentiment in news coverage appears to be unanimous in the wake of French President Emmanuel Macron's surprise decision to call early elections: It amounts to a monumental gamble in his fight with the far right. He is, in the words of center-right politician Valerie Pecresse, "playing Russian...

Biden Tweaks Trump in Visit to US Cemetery

Predecessor canceled planned trip while in France during his term

(Newser) - President Biden closed out his five-day trip to France by paying his respects at an American military cemetery that Donald Trump skipped when he was president. Before returning to the US, Biden honored America's war dead at the Aisne-Marne American cemetery in Belleau, about an hour outside Paris, the...

Biden Toasts 'Our First Friend'
Biden Toasts 'Our First Friend'

Biden Toasts 'Our First Friend'

State visit to France includes testimony to solidarity on fighting in Ukraine, Middle East

(Newser) - President Biden celebrated American's first ally in France on Saturday, stressing the strength of the partnership on a state visit that began with commemorating the Normandy landings in World War II. "This week, we have once again showed the world … the power of allies, what we can...

You Are Not to Touch the Royal Hand, Brigitte Macron

France's first lady tried to hold the queen's hand Thursday before taking a hint

(Newser) - It's always awkward when you reach for someone's hand and they refuse to give it. But it's far worse when that person is the Queen. French First Lady Brigitte Macron reached for Queen Camilla's hand during a D-Day memorial service in France on Thursday and was...

At D-Day Ceremony, Biden Draws Parallel to Ukraine

'To surrender to bullies, to bow down to dictators, is simply unthinkable'

(Newser) - President Biden marked the 80th anniversary of D-Day on Thursday by saying "we will not walk away" from the defense of Ukraine and allow Russia to threaten more of Europe. "To surrender to bullies, to bow down to dictators, is simply unthinkable," he said during a ceremony...

Prosecutors Don't Take Kindly to Coffin Stunt at Eiffel

They say display mentioning Ukraine was an act of psychological violence

(Newser) - Three people were released from custody Monday pending further investigation after they allegedly placed five coffins at the foot of the Eiffel Tower. According to officials at the Paris prosecutor's office, the three—citizens of Bulgaria, Germany, and Ukraine—placed the coffins, covered with a French flag that included...

Airbus' 'Racer' Helicopter Makes Its First Flight

The aircraft flew for 30 minutes in its maiden voyage in France

(Newser) - The Racer has taken flight. Quartz reports that the "strange helicopter-airplane hybrid" developed by Airbus went airborne on May 13, with a 30-minute flight in Marseille, France. Despite that flight's short duration, the company notes that the chopper's flight campaign will unfold more over the next couple...

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