News

8 May 2017

Macron wins French presidency

With 93% of the votes counted, Mr Macron has about 19.3 million votes, while Ms Le Pen has about 10.4 million, the French interior ministry says.

Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, told Macron: "I am delighted that the ideas you defended of a strong and progressive Europe, which protects all its citizens, will be those that you will carry into your presidency".

 An initial policy objective that Macron wants to reach with Germany is to agree a closer integration of the euro zone..

Paris and Berlin will have…Read

7 May 2017

French voters will decide within a few hours whether it will be Emmanuel Macron or Marine Le Pen

After an exciting election campaign the final voting is now in process. This though, is more than a French election because the outcome will involve all members of the EU. But, I believe French voters will understand this particularly after seeing the results of the recent British referendum (Brexit) and also the General Election in the U.S.A.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-election-idUSKBN183003

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3 May 2017

What would Emmanuel Macron as France’s leader mean for Europe?

A presidential win could offer a last chance for liberal reform of Europe but may prove bad news for Britain’s Brexit trade hopes.

From Patrick Wintour Diplomati editor at the Guardian Newspaper.

In a sign of how quickly European politics has moved, senior diplomats in the British embassy in Paris less than a decade ago held intense discussions about whether British officials could ever have a meeting with members of the French Front National. The party, then run by Jean-Marie Le Pen, was regarded as so off-limits as to…Read

2 May 2017

1 May 2017

If Marine Le Pen Wins The French Election? These Graphic Novels Decode A Possible Far-Right Future

By Beatrice Mabilon-Bonfils, Université de Cergy-Pontoise

One thing that’s nearly certain is the presence of extreme-right populist Marine Le Pen among the top vote-getters. Her party, the Front National (FN), has gone from a pariah in the 1980s to a major political force. While she and her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, have fallen short up to now, what would happen if she won in 2017? The answer can perhaps be found in – of all places – a graphic-novel series. Created by writer François Durpaire and artist Farid Boudjellal, the first volume, &ldquo…Read

30 April 2017

28 April 2017

Who will win the French presidential election on 7 May?

Ian Bremmer of risk consultancy Eurasia Group puts the chance of a Le Pen victory at 30%. "I feel that Macron is going to win but it's not a safe bet. It's significantly about turnout and there are externalities that are very plausible." One of those external factors, he believes, might be a terrorist attack on a greater scale than the murder of policeman Xavier Jugelé in central Paris three days before the first round. Or perhaps an outbreak of fake news

http://www.bbc.com/news/39719866.

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25 April 2017

Macron Victory

Commission president breaks protocol to join chorus of congratulations for pro-European centrist, who faces far-right Marine Le Pen in second round

The commission usually avoids commenting on ongoing national elections, but Margaritis Schinas later said circumstances had forced Juncker’s hand. He said the decision facing the French electorate “was a fundamental one”, between Macron, who represents pro-Europe values, and Le Pen, who “seeks its destruction”. “When the choice is set along these lines, for Jean Claude Juncker, who has spent 35 years of his life defending Europe’s values…Read

24 April 2017

Youngest president since Napoleon?

French voters have voted in the first round of a tight presidential election Emmanuel Macron to face Marine Le Pen in 7 May run-off, according to projections.

At 39, Emmanuel Macron would be the youngest president of the Republic of France since Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte, AFP reports. Louis Napoleon was 40 when he came to power in 1848.

French President François Hollande spoke with Emmanuel Macron by phone to congratulate him for making it through to the run-off.

 

 

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23 April 2017

The polling stations are open for the first round of 2017 French Election - Let the voting begin

Some 67,000 polling stations will open at 8 a.m., monitored by more than 50,000 police officers. 

"It is no secret that we will not be cheering madly should today's result produce a second round between Le Pen and Melenchon," German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said, adding that the election posed a risk to the global economy.

   Both U.S. President Donald Trump and his predecessor Barack Obama have shown interest in the vote. Obama spoke with Macron over the phone on Thursday.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-election-idUSKBN17O0DG

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The Final Countdown

France goes to the polls today for the first round of the presidential election. Yes, today is the day in which the top two candidates will be decided.  It's been a brilliant campaign and the weather forecast looks good for voting.

https://www.thelocal.fr/20170419/the-final-countdown-heres-how-frances-election-will-unfold

There is substantial evidence that the French population overall  has a relatively high opinion of the EU and its institutions. Polling conducted after the Brexit vote in the United Kingdom backs this up: in a Paris-Match/iTELE poll in June of this year,…Read

20 April 2017

The House of Commons backed Theresa May’s call for a general election on June 8, 2017

MPs voted by 522 votes to 13 - with Labour and Lib Dem helping secure the two-thirds majority needed to bring forward the election from 2020.

Jeremy Corbyn said a Labour government would stop Mrs May from using Brexit to make the UK an "offshore tax haven". Speaking in Croydon on his first campaign stop, the Labour leader said if elected, he would raise the minimum wage to £10 an hour and increase spending on the NHS, social care and council housing.

Germany - Mays Big Risk

In Germany's…Read

18 April 2017

Emmanuel Macron: A president in waiting?

Few could have asked for a better start to a political career than the French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron.

The current frontrunner is a graduate of elite National School of Administration, which produces the country's top civil servants and counts among its alumni three French presidents.

Macron will be hoping to make it number four in May, and as things stand he looks best positioned to fend off the far-right candidacy of Marine Le Pen, whom he is predicted to beat easily in a second round runoff, if the polls are correct.

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The frontrunners in France’s presidential election have staged rallies to win over undecided voters

Emmanuel Macron has promised to restore French optimism. The independent centrist was speaking to a crowd of around 20,000 people at the Bercy arena in Paris. As the leading candidates all stepped up their election campaigns over the Easter weekend. He said: "What has been proposed to the French in the last 20 years is not liberation or reconstruction, but a slow, unavowed acceptation of unemployment, state impotence and social breakdown.”

Meanwhile, Ms Le Pen’s bid to become France’s next president suffered today after a meeting in Paris was disrupted by anti-fascist…Read

17 April 2017

French General Election

A week before France's high-stakes presidential election, the four top candidates began a final push to woo undecided voters who will determine the outcome of the tight race between the hard left, centre, right and far right.

On April 23rd, the French go to the polls in the most unpredictable vote in the country's post-war history to choose two candidates from a field of 11 who will go through to a run-off two weeks later.

Opinion polls show one in three voters still undecided about who to back after a campaign characterised by scandals…Read

Victory for Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Sunday’s Referendum

The “yes” campaign won 1.25 million more votes than the “no” campaign and with only about 600,000 votes still to be counted this means the changes have been approved,

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the country's prime minister have declared victory in Sunday's referendum designed to hand Erdogan sweeping powers.

Those who support the reforms believe they will kick-start a lethargic economy and stabilize a nation dealing with the resurgence of a 30-year conflict with militants from the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). But opponents argue the proposals will lead to…Read

16 April 2017

Voting has started in Turkey

Turkish citizens in six European countries have started to vote in a referendum, the campaign for which has caused an international dispute. Voters are choosing whether to move Turkey from a parliamentary republic to a presidential one, boosting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's powers.  This should not be allowed to happen, but if it does, disasterous consequences will follow.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-39405210

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Britain no longer pragmatic

Two 'leave the EU' campaigners whom we rarely hear from these days are Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage.

€60bn Payment before trade deals can be discussed

The European commission said earlier this month that talks about a potential trade deal would occur only once “sufficient progress” had been made on Britain’s €60bn divorce bill and the position of EU citizens in the UK and British citizens on the continent.

The European Banking Authority and the European Medicines Agency employ about 1,000 people, many of them…Read

15 April 2017

Turkey Referendum: Parlimentary System could be replaced by a System of Authoritarianism

There are just two days to go until Turkey goes to the polls in a referendum that could give sweeping new powers to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.  He wants to replace Turkey’s parliamentary system with an executive presidency.

Erdogan’s critics fear a further drift into authoritarianism under a leader they regard as bent on eroding modern Turkey’s democracy and secular foundations.

The most important argument against authoritarianism politics is Mr Erdogan himself. Since the failed coup, he has been governing under a state of emergency that demonstrates…Read

14 April 2017

The Turkey Referendum - a dictatorship in the making

A referendum on vast new powers for the president hangs in the balance despite his comprehensive crackdown on dissent.

Should this amendment be approved on 16 April, Erdoğan will assume all parliamentary powers, including the ability to suspend parliament. He will rule over the council that appoints prosecutors and judges, which means total control over the judiciary. In other words, he wants to remove any hope of Turkey being a secular democracy, instead transforming it into a religion-based dictatorship.

A no vote could rein in his unchecked rise. A yes result…Read

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