France's new PM is the Barcelona-born son of a Catalan artist who obtained French nationality at the age of 20.
France has confirmed it will extradite Manuel Noriega to Panama, where he is wanted over human rights violations during his rule in the 1980s.
Valls, 51, is the Socialists’ hardliner on immigration and security and has held controversial stances while serving as interior minister.
Self-styled socialist strongman has been preparing a potential bid for weeks and with President Hollande out of the running now has his chance.
The new prime minister has given French government new direction and determination but still faces daunting task, says The Economist.