François Hollande

Hollande's new government: strict gender parity, and France's first black justice minister


France’s new socialist government was unveiled Wednesday evening, after an afternoon of prolonged talks between newly-elected President François Hollande and Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault. The list of 34 ministers – including 17 junior ministers – met Hollande’s promise to form a government with gender parity, and includes the creation of new ministries that announced the task ahead in tackling the economic crisis, like that of Productive Recovery. But the first surprise of the day was the news that Socialist Party leader Martine Aubry, once tipped for the post of prime minister, would not be included in Ayrault’s cabinet. Graham Tearse reports (a full list of the new government is presented on page three).

François Hollande 'no radical'

International — Link

After all the rhetoric, the arrival of France's new socialist president is unlikely to upset the European boat, argues The Independent.

Lightening strikes Hollande's jet en route to Germany

International — Link

New French president lands for crucial talks with Angela Merkel 90 minutes late after lightning strike forced him back home to change planes.

Jean-Marc Ayrault appointed French prime minister

France — Link

French President François Hollande has appointed Jean-Marc Ayrault as prime minister of an interim government ahead of legislative elections in June.

Busy agenda for François Hollande's first day in office

France — Link

François Hollande has been sworn in as president of France, becoming the first Socialist leader in 17 years to occupy the Elysee Palace.

Hollande on collision course with French car manufacturers

France — Link

After François Hollande takes over the national driving seat on Tuesday, the economic road ahead threatens a collision with France's car makers.

New French government to punish healthy firms that lay off workers

France — Link

Hollande advisor promises financial punishment for healthy firms that fire workers and a drive for a "moral" approach to big company practices.

French president-elect Hollande declares wealth of 1.2 million euros

France — Link

France's new president François Hollande says he is worth almost 1.2 million euros, considerably less than his predecessor Nicolas Sarkozy,

Sarkozy applauded at 'emotional' last cabinet meeting, Hollande rolls up his sleeves

France — Link

Nicolas Sarkozy has held his last ever cabinet meeting, decribed as "emotional", in which he was reportedly given a standing ovation by ministers.

Introducing Valérie Trierweiler, France's new 'First Companion'

France — Link

In the salons of the Quai d'Orsay, the protocol boffins at the French foreign ministry are straining over what to call the country's new First Lady.

Celebrations over, president-elect Hollande now faces a baptism of fire


France’s newly-elected president François Hollande has promised he will seek a reform of European austerity policies, beginning with a re-negotiation of the so-called fiscal compact treaty, and the introduction of economic growth initiatives. But his programme faces stern opposition from Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has ruled out any change to the fiscal compact. With a busy international agenda ahead, including summits of the G8 and NATO later this month, and crucial parliamentary elections in France in June, Hollande's room for negotiations before an EU summit on June 28th is uncomfortably tight. Meanwhile, the deepening political crisis in Greece continues to threaten an explosion of the eurozone. Lénaïg Bredoux and Ludovic Lamant report on the official and unofficial manouevering as the new French president prepares for his first major test in power.

François Hollande is elected French president

France — Report

Socialist Party candidate François Hollande has won the French presidential elections. Official results announced by the interior ministry at 1 a.m. Monday gave Hollande a 51.67% share of the vote in mainland France, but excluding the results from French expatriate votes. Hollande’s victory over incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy, credited with 48.33%, is the first time a socialist has been elected president since François Mitterrand won a second term of office in 1988 and ends 17 years of uninterrupted conservative occupancy of the post. Hollande, 57, will now formally enter office mid-May, when he will appoint a prime minister to form a caretaker government until parliamentary elections are held in June. “I have confidence in France, I know it well, I know we are capable of straightening ourselves up," Hollande said in a victory speech on Sunday evening. “It is this French dream that I will make it my job to accomplish." Sarkozy, meanwhile, said he accepted "full responsibility" for his defeat and announced he was quitting front-line politics. "My place can no longer be the same" he said, "another era is underway".

Watershed moment for Europe as France and Greece head for the polls

International — Analysis

France and Greece both go to the urns on Sunday for crucial elections that will, whatever the results, have a significant effect on the future of the EU’s approach to the economic crisis. While the final play-off in the French presidential elections on May 6th could produce a turning point in the use of blanket austerity measures to nurse already strangled EU economies back to health, the Greek legislative elections are in effect a referendum on the country’s continued membership of the eurozone. Mediapart’s Brussels correspondent Ludovic Lamant reports on what is likely to be a watershed moment for Europe.

How it happened: Sarkozy falls at last chance TV debate with Hollande

France — Link

The Telegraph gives a blow-by blow account of the French presidential debate between Nicolas Sarkozy and Socialist Party challenger François Hollande.

Tension mounts before Hollande-Sarkozy debate

France — Link

Nicolas Sarkozy and rival presidential election candidate François Hollande face off Wednesday evening in the one, high-stakes debate of the campaign.