France: Hollande digs in as rail strike looms

The labour dispute has a new chapter today in France. French president Francois Hollande has insisted that a controversial labour reform will not be withdrawn as strike action looms on the railways.

“The text assures the best performance for businesses and offers new rights to employees,” he told a newspaper.

The new general strikes to be schedule for next weeks by railway workes, Air France pilots and other trade unions.

Conclusion: French works are very angry with monsieur Hollande.

World affairs: US ‘spied on French presidents’ – Wikileaks

The website whistleblower unveils NSA has spied three French presidents Jacques Chirac, Nicolas Sarkozy and Francois Hollande among 2006 at 2012. US State Department Spokesman John Kirby said: “We do not comment on the veracity or content of leaked documents.” France has made no comment. Conclusion: More troubles in Washington DC

Greece: Tsipras has ‘realistic’ debt deal proposal despite European concerns

After a long night meeting among heads of European Central Bank (ECB) Mario Draghi and International Monetary Fund (IMF) Christine Lagarde with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande to discuss the Greek crisis in Berlin. Greece’ PM Alexis Tsipras vows a realitisc debt deal proposal.

He says he has issued a “a realistic proposal” to its international creditors in an attempt to secure a deal over its debts.

“We have submitted a realistic plan for Greece to exit the crisis,” he said.

Tspiras said the plan included “concessions that will be difficult”.

Conclusion: Will Tsipras save Greece from this?

Ukraine: US welcomes Minsk peace agreement despite Russia scepticism

After a long night of talks. Ukraine and Russia has reach a deal brokered by France and Germany on Belarus. The Minsk agreement includes:

  • Ceasefire to begin at 00:01 local time on 15 February
  • Heavy weapons to be withdrawn, beginning on 16 February and completed in two weeks
  • All prisoners to be released; amnesty for those involved in fighting
  • Withdrawal of all foreign troops and weapons from Ukrainian territory. Disarmament of all illegal groups
  • Ukraine to allow resumption of normal life in rebel areas, by lifting restrictions
  • Constitutional reform to enable decentralisation for rebel regions by the end of 2015
  • Ukraine to control border with Russia if conditions met by the end of 2015

After the agreement has sealed. Russian president Vladimir Putin told Russian television: “It wasn’t the best night for me, but it’s a good morning.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said it offered a “glimmer of hope”, while French President Francois Hollande said “the coming hours will be decisive”.

The White House welcomed the agreement as a “potentially significant step” but expressed concern over reports of continued fighting in eastern Ukraine.

“All the parties must show complete restraint in the run-up to the Sunday ceasefire, including an immediate halt to the Russian and separatist assault on Debaltseve and other Ukrainian towns,” Mr Kerry said in statement

Separatists gave the agreement a cautious welcome but Donetsk rebel leader Alexander Zakharchenko said Kiev would be to blame if the deal collapsed and warned that there would “be no meetings and no new agreements”.

Mr Poroshenko – who had accused Russia of making “unacceptable” demands – said rebels had launched an offensive after the agreement was announced.

Conclusion: Ukrainians and Russians, give a chance for peace.

Defence: France halts Mistral delivery to Russia indefinitely

France and Russia has strained relations. So, French government anounnces the suspension of delivery of the two warships to Russia. Its a Mistral, which is a amphibious vessel, not delivered by the crisis in Ukraine. In his statement on Tuesday, President Hollande said the “current situation in eastern Ukraine still does not allow for the delivery of the first” warship. What’s it means: Russia president Vladimir Putin loses his faith on France.

France: PM Manuel Valls wins confidence vote despite Sarkozy comeback

After weeks of political turmoil and scandals. France’s national assembly approves the new cabinet led by prime minister Manuel Valls by 269 to 244. Valls earlier defended reforms of his Socialist cabinet, saying they did not mean to destroy the welfare state.

Addressing the parliament before the vote, he admitted the cabinet had already lost the trust of many voters.

“I know the French public don’t believe in us any more – they’re been put off by the political spectacle of the past few weeks; this climate of narcissism and shame,” he said.

“But my only mission is to go forward and govern.”

Meanwhile, former president Nicolas Sarkozy is comeback for politics to lead conservative UMP Party in 2017 presidential polls. French RTL radio said Mr Sarkozy would put his decision to return to politics down to Francois Hollande’s “weakness” as president, as well as the absence of an opposition leader and the rise of the National Front.

On Thursday, Hollande will give an interview for French TV after recent dissents over his life unveils by the former first lady Valerie Trierweiler.

Conclusion: French loses their faith in politicians.

France: New cabinet named after Montebourg row

French socialists has announced their new cabinet led by prime-minister Manuel Valls. Former economic minister Arnaud Montebourg will be replaced by Emmanuel Macron, a former Rothschild banker and ex-presidential economic adviser.

President Francois Hollande said earlier that the new cabinet should “cohere to the directions of the prime minister”, who is on the party’s right wing.

Valls said he would hold a parliamentary vote of confidence in September or October, speaking in a TV interview after the new ministers were named.

“And you will see, the majority will be there. There can be no other way. If the majority isn’t there on that occasion, it would be finished. We couldn’t finish our work,” he told France 2 TV.

He also defended the choice of a former banker for new economy minister, saying: “So what? Can one not in this country be an entrepreneur? One can’t be a banker?”

Conclusion: Vive la droite, Vive la republique, Vive la France.