News Valérie Trierweiler with her partner, François Hollande

The President’s official companion has told a French journalist that she is aware that some sort of official statement needs to be made

Mr Hollande is accused of abandoning his 'anti-finance' election promises

Francois Hollande makes drastic U-turn on tax cuts and welfare in bid to save presidency

President says he  is ready to axe the ‘excesses and abuses’ of France’s social model

Aussaresses: he was thought to have lost his eye at war; it was later reported that it was in fact a failed cataract operation

Paul Aussaresses: General who fought in the Algerian war for independence and in retirement was tried for defending the use of torture

Paul Aussaresses was a French army general who in the final years of his life dispassionately revealed the torture techniques he employed during the Algerian war for independence and defended them as appropriate measures in the modern age of terrorism. Aussaresses spent nearly his entire career in the service of his country's military. He was described as a hero of the Second World War and fought in the French Indochina War before being posted to Algeria at the outset of the anticolonial rebellion there in 1954.

Belgium’s players celebrate their victory against Croatia

Belgium’s footballers catch nationalists offside as team goes through to World Cup 2014

The crowds packed the Grand Place in Brussels until the early hours of Saturday morning, cheering on their “Red Devils” who had beaten Croatia 2-1 to secure Belgium's place in next summer’s World Cup. Many beaming faces were painted black, yellow and red, the colours of the Belgian flag, which supporters waved euphorically throughout the Gothic square.

Marine Le Pen and her father acknowledge the audience after delivering a speech during the FN summer congress

National Front leader Le Pen gets a double election boost

Far-right party benefits from fatal shooting of armed robber and former PM’s comments

The Rector of Lyon's mosque Kamel Kabtane, centre, speaks during a meeting at the Minguettes mosque in Venissieux near Lyon,

Air force sergeant accused of planning mosque attack as Muslim leader denounces 'Islamophobic' France

23-year-old arrested over plot as violent incidents rise

France’s richest woman, Liliane Bettencourt, gave money to Mr Sarkozy

Sarkozy questioned over claims he cheated L'Oreal heiress

The French centre-right yesterday suffered one of the most miserable days in the history of any political movement in the democratic world.

A trio of Brits line up take on the French racing solo round the world, Mike Golding (Gamesa) left, Sam Davies (Savéol) centre, and Alex Thomson (Hugo Boss) right

Vendée Globe competitors will need luck to survive sailing's Everest

“As mayor of Les Sables d’Olonne in 1992, I wondered if I had made a decision which meant that I was sending people to their deaths.”

The former French president and his wife Carla Bruni-Sarkozy were not at the mansion as it was raided

Sarkozy is not above the law any more

Ex-French president's campaign finances are being probed and he is not getting an easy ride. By John Lichfield

Leading article: A light shone into the dark corners of power

The Leveson Inquiry has exploded the myth of Britain as a beacon of transparency

French scholar Richard Descoings found dead in New York

The director of one of France's most prestigious colleges has been found dead in a New York City hotel room.

President Sarkozy and his wife, Carla, live the luxury life at Elysée Palace

121 cars, €10,000 a day on food – book reveals the expensive tastes of France's golden couple

France may recently have suffered a credit agency downgrade, but President Nicolas Sarkozy's triple-A lifestyle in the Elysée Palace has been skewered in a new book.

DOMINIQUE DEVILLEPIN: The former Prime Minister could divert votes from his centre-right rival

Villepin's presidential run raises worries for Sarkozy

After 17 years in politics, including two years as Prime Minister, Dominique de Villepin has finally decided to run for election. And not just any election. Once a contemptuous centre-right rival of President Nicolas Sarkozy, Mr Villepin has infuriated his old enemy by entering next spring's presidential race.

Man held after grabbing Sarkozy

A man in a crowd grabbed French President Nicolas Sarkozy by the shoulder today and nearly knocked him to the ground before being tackled by security officers.

Jacques Chirac corruption trial date set

Former French President Jacques Chirac will go back on trial in September on corruption charges linked to his time as mayor of Paris.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
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Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable