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A curious bidding war between some of France's richest men over the ownership of loss-making daily newspapers in the south of France is nothing more than a preliminary move in a political chess game for power in Marseille, Mediapart has learned. As Laurent Mauduit reports, the cast of characters includes colourful businessman Bernard Tapie, billionaire François Pinault and President François Hollande himself, with various political interests pulling strings behind the scenes, in a tale of shifting alliances, old friendships and enmities.
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