FRANCE

France: A wind turbine project in Dunkirk

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On Thursday November 15th, French prime minister Edouard Philippe announced the creation of wind turbine project in Dunkirk. The challenge is to implement 500 megawatt in the North Sea. Several big companies are employed in a contest to lead the project : EDF, Engie, Iberdrola, Vattenfall… Among these different possibilities, the French government will select the best option to carry out the construction.

 

French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe visits the port of Dunkirk, northern France, during the 2nd Interministerial Committee of the Sea on November 15, 2018. (Photo by AFP)

 

For the project, there were no official figures but according to some sources the electricity price bill is estimated at around 80 euros. French state hopes to give a new dynamic to marine energies in the long run. Therefore, it has to run policies that encourage companies to bid regularly.

But this project is part of a global approach by the government. Indeed, a total of 6 similar projects are planned by 2024 everywhere in the country in order to promote green energy.

 

Julien Banoun, IEJ 3E

 

 

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France: New reforms in sight, retirement in the viewfinder

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EOR consultants

The government has started working on a new reform of the retirement in the country.

If you’re less than 56 years old you may be concerned by this reform. This week, a new concertation took place in the National Assembly. French deputies must establish a new program for spring 2019. High commissioners of retirement who is in charge of the folder has two main subjects to work on: build a universal system with “points” and abolish “specific regime”. They also have to determine the first year generation who will be concerned by the reform.

Since May 2018, 6 month after the beginning of the concertation with the employers organization and union organization, the government received all the parties to determine the main way of working. The government emphasizes that it’s not to do economies!

The new structure will probably start in 2025. In fact, the government affirms that the age of retirement will not change ! The aim is to respect the promis of Emmanuel Macron, president of France, “nothing to change for citizens who are less than 5 years from retirement”. The next six months must allow the high commissioners of retirement to precise the scale of solidarity schemes.

In the meantime, deputies are still working on the reform.

Johana Wehbe, IEJ 3E

 

France: Georges Tron acquitted

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Geogre Tron, the former state secretary

 

Former secretary of state Georges Tron  was acquitted on the 15th November. He was accused of rapes and sexual assaults on two of his former employees. When he was the Mayor of Draveil (Essonne), Virginie Ettel and Eva Loubrieu accused him of sexual touching and penetration in 2007 and 2010.
The court of justice of Seine-Saint-Denis pronounced the double acquittal of the Mayor of Draveil and his former assistant for culture, the complice of Georges Tron.

Georges Tron has always denied having sexual relations with the complainants.
While Georges Tron’s “partner in crimes” has “proved” sexual scenes, the court of justice revealed that the complainants were in “a logic of revenge”, after a change of post for the first and a dismissal for the other.
The judges also pointed out the ambiguity and fragility of the charges. Notably because Eva Loubrieu first admitted having relations with George Tron, before denouncing him for rapes.

Women’s associations were disappointed about this acquittal. They explained that it was complicated for women to launch into a penal and judicial path. They often have no chances to win. Georges Tron has been able to impose his will and exert sexual pressure in a professional context.
That’s why these associations struggle and were disappointed with the final verdict.

 

Domitie Bertaud IEJ 3E

 

Tariq Ramadan to come out of prison

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Tariq Ramadan
Tariq Ramadan has been released on conditions. Source: Libération.fr

 

French islamologue Tariq Ramadan is going to find freedom on Friday. Accused of rape, the man was imprisoned in Fresnes for 10 months.

However, he remains pursued for rape and the bail for his freedom is high: he has to pay 300,000 euros and has to return his Swiss passeport. As part of the conditions for his release, he is forbidden to leave the country and he cannot keep in touch with the three women involved and some witnesses. Ramadan will have to remain in Parisian region in order to check at the police station every week.

For the three women involved, the problem is not the Tariq Ramadan release, they are afraid of violence from the supporters of Ramadan. Christelle, one of the women, declared: “It’s not his liberation which frightens me; it is never Ramadan who makes things himself. They are dangerous.” And she added “I have fallen victim of insults and sputums.” For Christelle, this decision puts her directly in danger.

Tariq Ramadan has always claimed his innocence. For the first time in this case, the intellectual took the floor. His lawyer asked for the withdrawal of all the charges against him.

Said Gachouch, IEJ 3E

 

 

France: The Country Will be Yellow Saturday

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Yellow jackets
Yellow Jackets have planned to protest this weekend against French president Macron. Source: france3-regions.fr

Protests will be organized all around France on November 17th. Who are those “Yellow jackets”? Why are people blocking the country ?

The national strike will be taking place on Saturday to protest on rising fuel price, hence the nickname of the protesters, as “yellow jackets” are worn by drivers who have a car accident. It is expected that people from all around the country, urban and rural province as well as Paris urban agglomeration will participate. They are mostly people between 18 and 74, workers, executives or retired people.

The comparison with a sociological UFO is clear. Everyone wants to mobilize and it is a spontaneous organization that is set up. After the jacqueries under the Old Regime, the Night Stand or the red caps in recent years, supported by all political parties, whoever they are. But the unions remain skeptical about this movement as there is a risk it will turn violent.

Despite the government’s conversion assistance trying to ease the tension, nothing works. There are thousands of mobilizations and many people in France will be involved.

What will be the response of the government? A dead end according to several sources as in all mobilizations. Either there will be surprises or the movement will be renewed.

Emmanuel LASSABE, IEJ 3E

France: New trial Michel Fourniret, the ‘Ardennes monster’

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Michel Fourniret’s trial is now open. Source : Est Republicain

Tuesday 13th November, Michel Fourniret and his ex-wife Monique Olivier appear in front of the Criminal Court, in Versailles. This week, they are judged for the murder of Farida Hammiche in 1988. 

The facts

Also known as the “Ardennes monster”, Michel Fourniret was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2008 for the rape and murder of ten young women and girls in France and Belgium. His ex-wife, who helped him with the “hunt for virgins”, also received a life sentence ten years ago. This year, he confessed to strangling and beating 30-year-old Farida Hammiche in 1988 until she died. The body has never been found.

Cold as an Iceberg

According to Fagnart, the Belgian detective who obtained the confessions of Michel Fourniret in June 2014, both ex-companions did not “let appear any feelings of regret, nor any emotion “when they spoke of the murder of Farida Hammiche. Staid, they keep for the moment the secret of the place where Farida Hammiche was buried. For the policeman, it is clear that:
“Fourniret plays with justice, he takes himself for the center of the world, and for him, not to indicate where the body is, is a way to keep control in the matter”.

The day ends with no trace of remorse in the two accused. The hearings of the witnesses (11 in total) as well as those of the civil parties have been scheduled for today.

Cécile Giraud, IEJ Paris 3F1

Antibiotics shouldn’t be automatic

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Antibiotic campaign source: Doctissimo

“Antibiotics, they are precious, use them better.” Thanks to this slogan, the French government wants to encourage everyone to participate in the fight against the development of bacteria resistant to these drugs.

On the occasion of the global alert week on their good use, the new slogan of the government has been unveiled today, in order to fight against the overconsumption of antibiotics. Behind this message hides a major challenge for the public health: to prevent bacteria from developing resistance to these valuable medicines.

This trend, called antibiotic resistance, is a source to a loss of efficiency of several antibiotics. Some contaminations have become more and more difficult to treat, whereas others are already resisting all available treatments. Soon, we could be completely helpless in front of common infections. The situation is worrisome.

The overconsumption of antibiotics creates an adaptation effect in bacteria, which makes the drug ineffective. In Europe, France is the biggest consumer of antibiotics. The minister of higher education and the research, Frédérique Vidal, must announce today, the release of 40 million euros for the research of new antibiotics. Meanwhile, several new antibiotics have been developed.

In the meantime, the antibiotic resistance kills 40 thousands every year in Europe. It could kill 2.4 million by 2050.

Paul Giffard, IEJ 3F