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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.

May 4, 2015

France, Saudi Arabia: Iran nuclear deal must avoid destabilizing region

RIYADH (Reuters) – France and Saudi Arabia believe that any future deal between Iran and six major powers must ensure not to destabilise the region further and threaten Iran’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 a tough stance in Iran nuclear negotiations, to Riyadh to discuss regional issues with Gulf Arab leaders who fear a rapprochement with Tehran could lead to further detribalization in the region.

May 4, 2015

France, Qatar sign Rafale deal, Hollande hails Gulf ties

DOHA (Reuters) – France and Qatar signed a 6.3 billion euro ($7.02 billion) deal on Monday for the sale of 24 Rafale fighter jets, an accord President Francois Hollande hailed as a mark of Gulf Arab regard for French regional strategy including its firm line on Iran.

The contract – the third this year for Dassault AVMD.PA after deals to sell Rafale jets to Egypt and India – also includes MBDA missiles, and the training of 36 Qatari pilots and 100 technicians by the French military.

May 1, 2015

Activists bare breasts to disrupt Le Pen’s May Day speech in Paris

PARIS (Reuters) – Three bare-breasted women making Nazi salutes disrupted a May Day speech by French far-right leader Marine Le Pen as she accused her political rivals of failing to tackle immigration and radical Islam.

The women from the Femen activist group, with “Heil Le Pen” and “Stop Fascism” written on their breasts, chanted anti-National Front slogans from the balcony of a five-star hotel room overlooking the stage, to boos from the crowd.