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

Former French PM faces smear accusations

The former French prime minister, Dominique de Villepin, was the leading figure in a “cabal” which tried to smear Nicolas Sarkozy in 2004 to destroy his chances of becoming president, a French investigative judge has been told.

'Bribes and bombs' scandal returns to haunt Sarkozy

Families of 11 engineers murdered in Karachi in 2002 point finger of blame at French government

Chirac to be charged in cash for cronies case

Poll ratings soar for France's ex-president despite claims of embezzlement

Rama Yade: The political star who's eclipsing Sarko

Rama Yade is tall, elegant and, unusually for one of the French President's protégées, outspoken – which may explain why the Minister for Human Rights has fallen foul of the Elysée Palace. John Lichfield reports

Stanley Johnson: Like father, like son

The hair. The voice. The talent for dropping a clanger. Boris's dad shares them all... and now, unwittingly, reveals what really lies behind the family charm. Cole Moreton meets Stanley Johnson

It's the spitting image of our man in Paris

France's satirical TV puppets celebrated 20 years on the air this week with a marathon tribute to themselves and a new puppet – me.

De Villepin to face court over 'plot to smear Sarkozy'

The former French prime minister Dominique de Villepin has been ordered to stand trial for his role in an alleged plot to smear Nicolas Sarkozy, now president, when they were rival ministers.

Sarkozy under scrutiny over troop decision

President Nicolas Sarkozy's decision this spring to dispatch hundreds more French soldiers to Afghanistan was extremely unpopular. It was no surprise therefore that within hours of the slaughter in Afghanistan, M. Sarkozy interrupted his French riviera holiday with his wife Carla Bruni to fly to Kabul to support French troops.

Magical Mystery tour as Goss trusts in timber to round globe

If you could bottle the boundless optimism that is Pete Goss then not only would a fortune be beckoning but the world would also be changed overnight.

Investigation ordered after Michelin tyre boss drowns

Mystery as tycoon dies when fishing boat capsizes in 'fair weather'

New 'Big Brother' prompts record number of complaints

Record numbers of viewers have complained about the latest series of Big Brother. The first week of the series generated 184 complaints, according to the media regulator, Ofcom.

Blair flies to Bush's side to mount strong defence of Iraq invasion

Tony Blair will mount a strong defence of his actions over Iraq when he travels to Washington for talks with President George Bush later this week.

Mourinho laments and rejoices at Henry's huge decision

The best player to have graced the Premiership? Thierry Henry's statistics will be the testament to his work, the Arsenal manager, Arsène Wenger, said yesterday, and he found an unlikely ally in his Chelsea counterpart, Jose Mourinho, who said that English football should be "proud" that the Frenchman was staying.

Saudi press told to stop printing pictures of women

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah has told the country's newspapers to stop publishing pictures of women as they could lead young men astray.

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