Anne Penketh

Anne Penketh is a freelance journalist and columnist based in Paris. She was posted to Moscow, Paris and New York for AFP news agency before joining The Independent, where she was Diplomatic Editor until 2009.

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In 2011, France introduced fines for wearing of the full face veil in public

Call for headscarf ban at universities to reignite Islamic debate in France

Hijabs were banned from schools in 2004 and the face veil was banned in 2011

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy returns to the political stage to appeal for support for his debt-ridden party

France’s Nicolas Sarkozy is back, but for how long?

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy returns to the political stage on Monday to appeal for support for his debt-ridden party, as a poll suggests that three out of five French people are opposed to him running for office.

Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife, Carla Bruni, on the campaign trail

Nicolas Sarkozy’s election excess pushes party to the brink of bankruptcy

UMP – already heavily in debt – ordered to pay back €11m state subsidy after campaign overspend

Outrage was voiced after it emerged that Air France treated Carla Bruni-Sarkozy to a first-class plane ticket to New York

Trade union outrage over Air France's VIP treatment for Carla Bruni-Sarkozy

'If there are rules they should be for everybody,' says spokesman

Marine Le Pen, leader of France's National Front

Marine Le Pen may face racial hatred charge after losing MEP immunity

The leader of France’s far-right National Front party, Marine Le Pen, was stripped of her parliamentary immunity, opening the way for charges of inciting racial hatred to be laid against her.

Ziad Takieddine has confessed to having paid illegal kick-backs to fund the presidential campaign of Edouard Balladur

Lebanese businessman Ziad Takieddine paid illegal kickbacks to fund former French PM Edouard Balladur’s failed presidential bid

Lebanese businessman Ziad Takieddine has confessed to having paid illegal kick-backs to fund the presidential campaign of former French prime minister Edouard Balladur.

Disgraced French politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn

‘Animal instincts exist’: DSK makes comeback in Paris with appearance at Senate committee on tax evasion

Former IMF chief, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, delivers confident lecture two years after claims he sexually assaulted maid

Election year: 7 December 2009 – Iranian opposition supporters protest at Tehran University

The new suffragettes: Shirin Ebadi - the campaigner who has become an international figurehead for women's rights

A Nobel peace prize 10 years ago has done little to reduce the threats faced by the most charismatic champion of democratic rights for women in Iran

Vincent Autin, left, and Bruno Boileau kiss at France’s first official gay marriage in Montpellier

France's first gay marriage: Sinatra plays as Vincent and Bruno make history

The mayor hailed the “historic moment” that two French people of the same sex were united in marriage.

Redoine Faid promoting his book in 2010

France's most wanted man captured: Armed robber Redoine Faid back in custody after spectacular Hollywood-style jail break six weeks ago

'Public enemy number one' who was inspired by American gangster movies found in Paris

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Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas