Jacques Chirac

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.

Marine Le Pen elected French far-right leader

France's far-right National Front party elected Marine Le Pen as its new leader and likely presidential candidate yesterday, replacing her 82-year-old father Jean-Marie Le Pen, a source close to the party said.

Goss heads for Guadeloupe on the Route du Rhum

Cups of tea provide the inspiration for one of Britain ’s most genial ocean racers, Pete Goss, as he returns to the international scene in the Route du Rhum, which starts tomorrow.

Leader of a superpower, led by a dog called Bo

Leaders of men they may be but when it comes to inspiring the loyalty of their canine constituents, presidents and prime ministers often fall short. And no one is more obviously impaired in the doggie-discipline department than Barack Obama, at least according to America's dog whisperer, Cesar Millan.

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Dominique de Villepin: Top of the fops

He is handsome, intellectual and aristocratic. So could Nicolas Sarkozy's bitterest opponent yet fulfil his mission as France's self-appointed saviour?

Claude Levi-Strauss: Intellectual considered the father of modern

Claude Lévi-Strauss was the most famous anthropologist of his generation, and one of the leading intellectuals in post-war France. His writings inspired a major intellectual movement, and at least two of his books have already become classics of French literature. He was largely responsible for the development of social anthropology in France.