François Hollande

'Why the planned Lyon-Turin railway line should be sabotaged'

International — Interview

On Tuesday February 24th the French president François Hollande and Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi met in Paris to give their full backing to the highly-controversial high-speed rail link between Lyon and Turin. Much of the bitter opposition to the railway focuses on the planned 57km tunnel through the Alps between the Susa valley in Italy and the Maurienne valley in France. One of the most vehement opponents of the scheme is acclaimed Italian novelist and translator Erri de Luca. His comment that the railway project should be “sabotaged” has now landed him in court for the alleged incitement of a crime, over which he faces a five-year jail term if found guilty. Here the Italian author talks to Mathilde Auvillain about his determination to defend his right to freedom of expression.

Hollande, Valls slip back in opinion poll ratings

France — Link

Approval ratings for the French president slipped to 24%, and 46% for his prime minister, denting their sharp rise after the Paris terror attacks.

Hollande rises early for yearly cow-patting ritual at Paris agricultural fair

France — Link

The French president spent eight hours at the opening of the fair, a key event for the farming world and politicians seeking its support.

Hollande, Merkel meet in Paris ahead of fresh Ukraine crisis talks next week

International — Link

The French president and German Chancellor warned of further sanctions against Russia if Ukraine ceasefire continues to be violated.

Hollande warns 'coming hours decisive' for Ukraine peace deal

France — Link

The French president, who helped broker the peace agreement reached in Minsk between Russia and Ukraine, said it was still at a fragile stage.

Hollande, Merkel and Putin arrive in Minsk for Ukraine talks

International — Link

The French, German and Russian leaders will be joined by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko for negotiations for a ceasefire in east Ukraine.

How France and the US are being held hostage by Saudi Arabia

France — Analysis

Both French president François Hollande and American head of state Barack Obama flew to Riyadh to pay their respects after the death of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia on January 23rd. For the French leader it was yet another journey to the Arabian kingdom that he has already twice honoured with state visits. France and the United States - and other Western countries – have stayed close diplomatically to Saudi Arabia, seeing it as a source of oil, a massive market to buy their weapons and a pivotal place to exchange key intelligence. But the flipside of this approach, write Thomas Cantaloube and Pierre Puchot, is that these countries have been trapped into supporting Saudi's own regional political games, while also backing one of the most repressive regimes on earth. Moreover, at a time when France and other nations have made fighting terrorism their international priority, elements in the Saudi kingdom are still suspected of financial links with prominent terror groups.

Germany's Merkel and France's Hollande head to Kiev and Moscow

France — Link

The surprise peace initiative was announced by President Hollande as he held a key-note press conference in Paris.

France's Hollande boosts community service after attacks

France — Link

In wide-ranging  press conference French president said scheme would be expanded to allow any young person to carry out civic service.

Greek PM Tsipras seeks anti-austerity ally at Paris talks

France — Link

President Hollande agreed that Europe needed to spur more growth – but said that Greece also had to abide by EU rules and obligations.

Attacks boost Hollande's ratings - but for how long?

France — Link

An analysis of the French president's recent surge in popularity and the likelihood of whether it will last ahead of a key press conference.

Hardliner takes helm of France's CGT union

France — Link

Election of 'hard case' Philippe Martinez could make it harder for President François Hollande to get backing for economic reforms.

Unemployment in France hit new record in December

Économie et social — Link

Official figures show that at the end of 2014 some 3.496 million people were claiming jobless benefits in France.

‘France is your homeland’, Hollande tells French Jews

France — Link

On the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the French president also announced tough new measures to combat anti-Semitism.

Greek drama: can French Left copy Syriza's success?

France — Analysis

Sections of the Left in France greeted Syriza's triumph in the Greek elections on Sunday with great enthusiasm, with some hailing it as an “historic moment”. But the success of the Greek party, which unites various left-wing groups, has also highlighted the continuing divisions on the Left in France and its own failure to create a lasting electoral coalition. At the same time the challenges facing the new Syriza government, which is seeking to end austerity and renegotiate its debt burden with the EU and international bodies, underline the problems facing any left-wing administration in Europe. A key question is whether France's own socialist president, François Hollande, will now seize the opportunity to change economic direction and push the EU and Germany to back more growth-oriented policies. First, Mediapart's Stéphane Alliès, in Paris, examines how the French Left will react to the Greek results, then Brussels correspondent Ludovic Lamant wonders whether any truly left-wing policies can be carried out by national governments under current eurozone rules.