Key socialist minister backs centrist French presidential candidate

France — Link

Maverick centrist Emmanuel Macron received a significant boost to his presidential election campaign when defence minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, a veteran Socialist Party figure, announced his support for Macron's candidature in an interview published Friday. 

Furious socialists turn backs on 'verbally incontinent' Hollande


Just when President François Hollande’s chances for re-election next year appeared as low as they could ever get, they fell even lower still after the publication last week of a book of interviews in which he launches a series of scathing attacks on a wide number of people ranging from the judiciary to footballers, his political opponents to his allies, and the rebels on the Left of his Socialist Party. Amid the outrage caused by his comments, Hollande’s remaining allies in the party view the book as the last straw in a long-running series of blunders that now make him, in the words of one socialist senator, “indefensible”. Lénaïg Bredoux and Christophe Gueugneau report on the fury and dismay of socialist MPs and members of government.

Cool German reaction to French appeal for support in Central Africa

International — Link

Germany appears to have dismissed French calls for EU partners to help with financial support and ground troops for its CAR peacekeeping mission.