Keyword: war

The French-made warships blockading Yemen's starving population

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The French-built Saudi frigate Al-Dammam 816, in May 2014. © US Navy The French-built Saudi frigate Al-Dammam 816, in May 2014. © US Navy

Video evidence that warships sold by France to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have played an active role in the maritime blockade of Yemen, contributing to the starvation of millions of civilians in what the UN has described as the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, has emerged in an investigation partnered by Mediapart. Meanwhile, a UN report earlier this month warned that the legality of arms exports to belligerents in the conflict in Yemen by countries including France, Britain and the US “remains questionable”, and that “states may be held responsible for providing aid or assistance for the commission of international law violations”. Antton Rouget and Yann Philippin report.

Crackdown on journalists over exposé of French arms used in Yemen

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A Saudi army display of French-made CAESAR howitzers (left), one of the most lethal artillery weapons in existence. © DR A Saudi army display of French-made CAESAR howitzers (left), one of the most lethal artillery weapons in existence. © DR

Two journalists from the French online collective Disclose, dedicated to investigative reporting, have been summoned for questioning this month by France’s internal intelligence agency, the DGSI, following their revelations of the massive use of French-made weapons in the devastating war in Yemen. Together with a journalist from state broadcaster Radio France, they are officially suspected of “compromising national defence secrecy”, an offence that can carry a five-year jail term. In reality, the journalists exercised their professional duty to inform the public of a confidential military report that demonstrates how the government has concealed the truth of the deployment of French-made arms in Yemen by a Saudi-led coalition accused of war crimes.

Macron says France helped avoid war in Lebanon

French president took credit for solving political crisis in Lebanon last year and stated that Saudi Arabia had held PM Saad al-Hariri for weeks. 

Dunkirk flotilla sails to France for 75th anniversary events

Around 50 small boats arrived in the French port to commemorate Operation Dynamo in which 338,000 troops were rescued from Nazi forces.

French secret agent Bob Maloubier dies aged 92

An agent in the Special Operations Executive in World War 2, Maloubier was tasked with sabotage and spying on Nazi forces in France.

Life and death amid the ruins of conflict

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The mystery of the 'disappeared' of Gaza

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Quartier de Chajaya, Gaza, septembre 2014 © Pierre Puchot Quartier de Chajaya, Gaza, septembre 2014 © Pierre Puchot

The International Committee of the Red Cross calls it “a major problem”, while the United Nations says it has no idea of the numbers involved. The one thing that is certain is that at least hundreds of families in Gaza are still looking for relatives who have disappeared without trace following the 50-day Israeli offensive that began in July. For some, the answer may lie beneath the rubble of destroyed buildings that still litter the land. But there is also speculation that other missing Palestinians may be detained in Israel, or have met death as they fled by sea to Europe. Mediapart’s Middle East and North Africa affairs correspondent Pierre Puchot reports from Gaza on an enduring mystery that has become something of a taboo.

Churchill envisaged France declaring war on UK over Mers-el-Kebir

A top-secret telegram shows Churchill considered France might declare war on UK in 1940 in retaliation for Royal Navy's sinking of its fleet. 

Syria: war, silence and lies

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The United States and France – though no longer Britain, it seems- are poised to intervene militarily in Syria. While helping to remove the Assad regime is an urgent priority, the expected campaign of air strikes seems like a headlong rush without legal basis. And one which is a form of camouflage for past errors and acts of cowardice, the opportunistic management of public opinion and a possible trigger for a regional cataclysm with incalculable consequences. Yet, argues Mediapart editor François Bonnet, there are alternatives.

Why France is gearing up for a culture war with the United States

France says that it will not start negotiations on transatlantic trade talks if cultural industries are not excluded from the start.

Islamists launch new attack on Gao in northern Mali

Islamist rebels launched attack on the northern town of Gao, liberated from their control in January, but were repelled after two hours of fighting.

Hollande says Islamist 'leaders' killed in Mali

French president does not name 'terrorist leaders' killed in recent fighting in Mali, where a fourth member of French forces died on Wednesday.

Currency war likely between Germany, France

Berlin favors a stronger euro, but France's president says the single currency’s heady rise on the foreign exchanges needs to be brought under control.

Hollande and 'the Bamako effect'

President Hollande has enjoyed acclaim for his handling of the French-led war in Mali, but a sterner challenge awaits, argues The Economist.

The energy stakes in the Sahel surrounding the war in Mali

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As in many recent conflicts involving Western intervention in other countries, France’s decision to wage war against Islamist militants in Mali has been accused by some as furthering its energy interests and economic investments, a suggestion that President François Hollande has unequivocally denied. Mediapart’s international affairs specialist Thomas Cantaloube finds the truth lies in between as he examines here just what are France's interests in the region. While Mali has quasi-inexistent mineral or energy resources, in the wider Sahel area, comprising the north of Mali, the east of Mauretania, Niger and parts of Algeria and Libya, the energy issue is significant.