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May 28, 2015

North Korean nuclear, missile experts visit Iran-dissidents

PARIS, May 28 (Reuters) – An exiled Iranian opposition group
said on Thursday that a delegation of North Korean nuclear and
missile experts visited a military site near Tehran in April
amid talks between world powers and Iran over its nuclear
programme.

The dissident National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI)
exposed Iran’s uranium enrichment plant at Natanz and a heavy
water facility at Arak in 2002. Analysts say it has a mixed
record and a clear political agenda.

May 28, 2015

French foreign minister to visit Israel, Palestinian territories as part of efforts to revive peace talks

PARIS (Reuters) – France’s foreign minister said on Thursday he would travel to Israel and the Palestinian territories in June, aiming to press ahead in getting an international consensus for a U.N. Security Council resolution that would set parameters for peace talks.

“We are for a two-state solution. We need to ensure Israel’s security that’s obvious. There is no peace and security without justice for the Palestinians, but let’s be frank justice hasn’t been given to the Palestinians,” Laurent Fabius told France Inter radio.

May 28, 2015

Iran, North Korea forging ballistic, nuclear ties: dissidents

PARIS (Reuters) – An exiled Iranian opposition group said on Thursday a delegation of North Korean experts in nuclear warheads and ballistic missiles visited a military site near Tehran in April amid talks between world powers and Iran over its nuclear program.

The dissident National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) exposed Iran’s uranium enrichment plant at Natanz and a heavy water facility at Arak in 2002. But analysts say it has a mixed track record and a clear political agenda. Iran says allegations of nuclear bomb research are baseless and forged by its enemies.

May 27, 2015

France warns Iran over nuclear deal as deadline nears

ANKARA/PARIS (Reuters) – France warned on Wednesday it was ready to block a final deal between Iran and the six major powers unless Tehran provided inspectors access to all installations, including military sites.

Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, last week ruled out international inspection of Iran’s military sites or access to nuclear scientists under any nuclear agreement. Iran’s military leaders echoed his remarks.

May 26, 2015

Fabius hopes Paris climate talks can reverse Copenhagen failure

PARIS (Reuters) – A breakthrough international accord to curb global warming is within reach but major hurdles still loom including resistance to a legally binding accord, France’s foreign minister said in an interview with Reuters.

Senior officials from almost 200 nations will meet from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11 in Paris to try to rise above the collapse of the last global climate-change conference in Copenhagen in 2009 and nail down an elusive final agreement.

May 19, 2015

France recall veteran flyhalf Michalak for World Cup

PARIS (Reuters) – Experienced Toulon flyhalf Frederic Michalak was the surprise inclusion in France coach Philippe Saint-Andre’s provisional squad for this year’s World Cup.

Michalak, who was recalled with fellow flyhalf Francois Trinh-Duc, was dropped after last year’s tour to Australia, but returns for his third World Cup.

May 19, 2015

Rugby-France recall veteran flyhalf Michalak for World Cup

PARIS, May 19 (Reuters) – Experienced Toulon flyhalf Frederic Michalak was the surprise inclusion in France coach Philippe Saint-Andre’s provisional squad for this year’s World Cup.

Michalak, who was recalled with fellow flyhalf Francois Trinh-Duc, was dropped after last year’s tour to Australia, but returns for his third World Cup.

May 5, 2015

France, Saudi seeking to seal quickly billions of euros in deals

RIYADH (Reuters) – France is in talks to agree billions of euros worth of contracts in Saudi Arabia that could be completed quickly, ranging from defense to civil aviation, transport and energy, the French government said on Tuesday.

Speaking after President Francois Hollande held talks with key ministers of Saudi Arabia’s new cabinet, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said the two countries had set up a joint committee to seal some 20 projects over the coming months.

May 5, 2015

French fighter jets find takers in a worried world

RIYADH (Reuters) – After failing for years to win a single order for the Dassault-built Rafale fighter jet, France has scored a string of multi-billion-euro wins in recent weeks and is on a quest for more.

Global appetite for the jets has surged as a result of the United States’ diminishing influence in the Arab world along with wider security concerns over the rise of Islamic State insurgents – which Paris is more than happy to assuage. Egypt, India and Qatar have all just signed contracts.

May 5, 2015

France, Saudi Arabia: Iran nuclear deal must be verifiable, no threat to region

RIYADH, May 5 (Reuters) – France and Saudi Arabia believe
that any future nuclear accord between Iran and six major powers
must be robust, verifiable and no threat to Tehran’s neighbours,
the two countries said ahead of a summit in Riyadh on Tuesday.

Saudi Arabia invited French President Francois Hollande,
whose country is deemed to have the toughest stance among the
six world powers negotiating with Iran, to Riyadh to discuss
regional issues with Gulf Arab leaders who fear a rapprochement
with Tehran could further inflame the region.