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Hollande arrives in Bangui to meet French troops

French President Francois Hollande arrived in the capital of the Central African Republic on Friday on a visit to meet French troops and interim president Catherine Samba Panza. The visit comes nearly three months into a French mission to stop deadly sectarian killing in its former colony, with Paris saying its troops face "considerable difficulties" in bringing the situation under control. sw-mc/txw/yad

President Hollande to visit French troops in CAR Friday

President Francois Hollande will visit French troops deployed in the Central African Republic on Friday and meet with the interim president of the troubled former colony, his office said. Hollande will have talks with Catherine Samba Panza, address some of the soldiers and also meet with religious leaders during a brief stopover in the capital Bangui on his way back from Nigeria, where he is attending a summit with African leaders.

French registered jobless hits new record in January

The number of unemployed in France jumped to a new record on Wednesday, to 3.31 million people registered in January, prompting the government to pledge anew that it would buck the trend this year after failing to do so in 2013. The number of new job-seekers rose by 8,900, the labour ministry said. If those holding part-time employment were taken into account the number of unemployed rose to 4.92 million, another record.

French president says Ukraine's territorial integrity 'must be respected'

French President Francois Hollande said in a statement Sunday that Ukraine's territorial integrity "must be respected" following a tumultuous week that saw a sudden change in leadership and new presidential elections called. His appeal echoed those of the United States, Germany and the European Union amid fears that Ukraine could fracture along its Russo-Ukrainian linguistic and cultural faultline. mad/rmb/gk

Hollande seeks EU sanctions on Ukraine by Thursday

French President Francois Hollande has asked the European Union to put in place targeted sanctions against Ukrainian leaders by Thursday. "He has asked the European Union to react rapidly and take decisions to put in place these sanctions at a foreign affairs council meeting on February 20," Hollande's office said in a statement. bur-ial/ach/mm/cc

Hollande favours EU sanctions against Ukraine leaders

The European Union should consider sanctions against Ukrainian leaders, French President Francois Hollande said Wednesday. "France is of the view that the leaders must answer for their actions and that individual sanctions must be considered by the European Union," government spokeswoman Najat Vallaud-Belkacem said, quoting the president. ha/ach/cc

Hollande favours EU sanctions against Ukraine leaders

The European Union should consider sanctions against Ukrainian leaders, French President Francois Hollande said Wednesday. "France is of the view that the leaders must answer for their actions and that individual sanctions must be considered by the European Union," government spokeswoman Najat Vallaud-Belkacem said, quoting the president. ha/ach/cc

Police to grill paparazzo behind Hollande affair snaps

French police on Tuesday were to question paparazzo Sebastien Valiela, whose photographs revealed the affair between President Francois Hollande and actress Julie Gayet that made global headlines. The move comes after the 41-year-old actress filed a criminal complaint against the French photographer for breach of privacy, an offence that can be punished with a year in jail and a fine of up to 45,000 euros ($61,000).

C. Africa president asks France to stay till polls

The leader of the strife-torn Central African Republic asked French troops Monday to stay until polls due in early 2015, as unabated sectarian violence wrecked Paris's hope of a quick exit. Interim President Catherine Samba Panza's appeal to the former colonial power came three days after France's decision to boost its contingent to 2,000 and on the eve of a review of the CAR's deadly sectarian conflict by the UN Security Council.

Hollande bids to woo foreign investors back to France

President Francois Hollande sought to woo sceptical investors back to France on Monday, telling global business chiefs his government had no fear of foreign capital. Anxious to bring the French economy back to sustained growth and turn around his record-low poll numbers, Hollande met some 30 top executives at the Elysee Palace for talks on France's business climate. The heads of leading companies including Volvo, Bosch, Siemens, Samsung, General Electric, Intel and Nestle were joined at the talks by chiefs of sovereign wealth funds from Gulf nations and China.
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