France

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Polanski's Gig Hosting France's Oscars Met With Outrage

France's minister for women's rights calls it 'shocking'

(Newser) - The pick of Roman Polanski to lead the jury for the annual Cesars—France's version of the Oscars—was met with outrage this week, AFP reports. France's minister for women's rights calls it "surprising and shocking" and the "banalization of rape." Polanksi pleaded guilty... More »

Cyclist Born in 1911 Sets World Record

105-year-old Robert Marchand is an old hand at records, says he 'could have done better'

(Newser) - A French cyclist has set a new record for riding 14 miles in one hour. If that doesn't sound so remarkable—the world record is 33.8 miles—consider the category in which Robert Marchand was competing: over 105. The retired firefighter did it the first time riding in... More »

Number of French Organ Donors Just Shot Up

New law presumes consent unless you opt out

(Newser) - French people who die will become organ donors unless they specifically opt out before their death, under a new law that took effect on the first day of 2017. Previously, the families of French citizens who had not specified whether they wanted to be organ donors were contacted after their... More »

Finally Country Takes Stand on Checking Work Emails at Home

France's 'right to disconnect' law goes into effect Sunday

(Newser) - In what may be the best French innovation since kissing and/or toast, the country has given its workers the right not to check work emails while at home. The Independent reports the new "right to disconnect" law takes effect Sunday for companies with more than 50 employees. The law... More »

Frenchwoman Who Killed Abusive Husband Is Pardoned

Jacqueline Sauvage says she had been physically abused for nearly 50 years

(Newser) - A woman who killed her husband in 2012 was released Wednesday after receiving a full pardon from the president of France, the BBC reports. According to the Guardian , 69-year-old Jacqueline Sauvage shot her husband three times in the back with a hunting rifle the day after their son killed himself.... More »

Once Humble, the Beret Is Now Tres Chic in France

Longtime peasants' hats in Laulhere's new Paris shop selling for more than $1K

(Newser) - What's next, a designer accordion? The humble French beret has gone upscale, with one of the oldest makers of the classic French hat opening a chic boutique in Paris, the Guardian reports. Laulhère , which has been making berets for 170 years, has hung a shingle on swanky rue... More »

France's PM Steps Down to Run for President

Manuel Valls makes presidential run, Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve steps in as new PM

(Newser) - French Prime Minister Manuel Valls stepped down Tuesday to focus on running for president in next year's election and was replaced by Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve, a man who embodies the fight against Islamic extremism, the AP reports. Valls resigned a day after announcing his candidacy in the wake... More »

Fillon Wins French Primary, Vows 'Change of Software'

Handily beats Alain Juppe in conservative runoff

(Newser) - Francois Fillon won France's first-ever conservative presidential primary Sunday after promising drastic free-market reforms and a crackdown on immigration and Islamic extremism, beating a more moderate rival who had warned of encroaching populism, the AP reports. "President! President!" chanted the former prime minister's supporters as he... More »

Man Discovers $3.7M Worth of Gold in His New House

'It was under the furniture, under piles of linen, in the bathroom ... everywhere'

(Newser) - Inheriting a house from hoarders isn't so bad when the stuff they hoarded is ... a whole bunch of gold. The AFP reports a man inherited a house in France from a deceased relative only to discover $3.7 million worth of hidden gold. “It was under the furniture,... More »

Woman Murdered at French Home for Missionaries

Police aren't sure whether attack linked to terrorism

(Newser) - French police have launched a massive manhunt for a masked gunman who murdered a woman at a retirement home for Catholic missionaries Thursday night. Montpellier prosecutor Christophe Barret says a woman called police to say she had been attacked at the facility in the village of Montferrier-sur-Lez, the Guardian reports.... More »

Paris Thieves Nab $5.6M in Highway Heist

Luxury car with two Qatari sisters is forced off the road

(Newser) - Armed robbers near Paris made off with $5.6 million Monday—from a highway, not a bank. Police say two Qatari sisters in their 60s were traveling along the A1 motorway from Paris' Le Bourget airport when robbers forced the driver of their Bentley to pull over near a service... More »

French Voters Reject Sarko Comeback

He unexpectedly loses party primary

(Newser) - Nicolas Sarkozy isn't going to get a second shot at the French presidency: The former president was unexpectedly defeated in a primary for the center-right Republican party, reports Reuters . After his defeat, Sarkozy endorsed former prime minister Francois Fillon, who will face Alain Juppe, another former PM, in a... More »

End of the 'Jungle': Migrant Camp Coming Down in France

Thousands of refugees near Calais being bused out to temporary centers

(Newser) - A camp that has come to symbolize Europe's struggle to handle an ever-growing wave of migrants is being emptied and dismantled near Calais, France. Nicknamed the "Jungle," the camp has been home to somewhere between 7,000 and 10,000 people, and a mass evacuation got started... More »

Poland Delivers Ultimate Diss to France— About Forks

It's getting nasty

(Newser) - Note to self: Don't anger Poland's deputy defense minister, or he'll remind you about your country's uncouth eating habits from the 1500s. That was Bartosz Kownacki's reaction after France apparently rescinded Poland's invite to the Euronaval maritime defense fair next week, the Guardian reports.... More »

Lawyers Abandon 'Silent' Paris Suspect

Abdeslam 'will use his right to remain silent'

(Newser) - Know an attorney in want of a challenge? The two lawyers representing the only living suspect in the Paris terror attacks have dropped Salah Abdeslam's case. Abdeslam's French lawyer Frank Berton says his client "will not talk and will use his right to remain silent," leaving... More »

Details Emerge in Kardashian Robbery

Some are whispering Paris incident may have been an inside job

(Newser) - More details are emerging about Kim Kardashian's terrifying ordeal in Paris on Sunday night, report E! Online and NBC News . The 35-year-old reality-TV star was said to have been bound, gagged, and held at gunpoint, with NBC noting she was robbed in a room in a private mansion. A... More »

French Man's Destruction of Apple Store Très Sophisticated

He was apparently upset about a refund

(Newser) - Geez, the French are even sophisticated while performing wanton acts of destruction. The Verge reports a young man was caught on video calmly and methodically wrecking up an Apple Store in France over a refund disagreement. The man used a steel ball—apparently the kind used in a French lawn... More »

France Is World's First Nation to Ban Plasticware

No more plastic plates, cups, utensils unless they're biodegradable

(Newser) - Visit Paris and you'll spot people picnicking near the Eiffel Tower—but don't be surprised if they're soon scarfing down their jambon croissants off of napkins or real dishware. That's because a measure passed last month has made France the first country to ban single-use plastic... More »

World's Longest Lightning Bolt Traveled Nearly 200 Miles

Another record-setting bolt lasted more than 7 seconds

(Newser) - Even among lightning, these two bolts shone bright. For the first time ever, the World Meteorological Organization has added official records for lightning to its list of notable temperatures, winds, and rains, USA Today reports. That means we now know the longest traveling lightning bolt was over Oklahoma in June... More »

Priest Murdered by ISIS Already on Path to Sainthood

Jacques Hamel was murdered in his church in France

(Newser) - An 85-year-old French priest murdered in his own church by Islamic militants in July is already being prepped for sainthood, Reuters reports. Speaking during a Mass Wednesday at the Vatican, Pope Francis called Jacques Hamel a "good, humble man" and a martyr. "He gave his life for us... More »

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