The artificial heart produced by Biomedical firm Carmat

Science trumps sentiment as France claims breakthrough with first artificial heart transplant

'Holy grail' of transplant surgery is performed on 75-year-old man

A man prays in the CAR; 600 have died since fighting started

French President François Hollande isolated over conflict in Central African Republic

Mr Hollande has pleaded with other EU members to put more boots on the ground in the former African colony

French pub fined €9,000 after customers returned empties to bar - because it's 'undeclared labour'

French officials have fined a pub in Brittany €9,000 for “undeclared labour” after a customer returned some empty glasses to the bar.

Jean-Marie Le Pen with FN deputy Marion Marechal-Le Pen in November of this year - the former leader of the FN has suggested Romanians are 'naturally' inclined to stealing

French far-right politician Jean Marie Le Pen fined for racist Roma remarks

Jean Marie Le Pen, the former leader of French extreme-right group the National Front, has been fined €5,000 for suggesting Romanians were “naturally” inclined to steal.

Double coach crash in France leaves Oxbridge skiers needing medical attention

Lucky escape for dozens of students despite side-on collision

More trouble for François Hollande as France is christened the new “sick man of Europe”

President François Hollande is wrestling with a sluggish economy and unemployment at a 16-year high

Munster celebrate after their late victory over Perpignan

Perpignan 17 Munster 18: Last-gasp try from JJ Hanrahan rescues Munster from jaws of defeat in thrilling finish

Perpignan looked to have secured a late win through Tommaso Benvenuti's effort by Hahrahan came off the bench to score with time expired

Car bomb kills two UN peacekeepers in Mali town Kidal

A car bomb has exploded in the Malian town of Kidal, killing at least two UN peacekeepers.

France has called on Britain to 'share' more of the policing and financial 'burden' caused by the pile-up of illegal immigrants in Calais

France calls on Britain to 'share' Calais immigrant 'burden'

The vast majority of the migrants there refuse to apply for asylum in France, as once they do so, they will lose their right to seek asylum in the UK

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.

French café starts charging extra to rude customers

Manager of La Petite Syrah in Nice says staff were fed up with ‘customers being rude when they’re busy’

PIP breast implant boss Jean-Claude Mas set to appeal after court jails him

Court rules that the French businessman who sold tens of thousands of faulty silicone breast implants around the world is guilty of fraud

Jamie Gibson goes over from close range for Leicester against Montpellier on Sunday

Leicester 41 Montpellier 32: Miles Benjamin delighted to accept French surrender

The English clubs may be turning their backs on the most compelling annual tournament in the union game but at least they are showing the good grace to wait until the end of the season. The French appear to be engaged in a mass skedaddle with two thirds of the campaign still to run. Racing Métro, Perpignan, Toulouse... between them, three of the biggest teams in the country have just made a mockery of the idea that they are still remotely interested in European competition.

Hold on tight: The best clutches to see you through the highs and lows of party season

Clockwise from top left: Mirrored clutch, £39.99, zara.com

High unemployment has provoked protests across France

Vive la black market! One in three French people say they have earned undeclared income this year

Anne Penketh reports on resourceful ways to dodge VAT

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How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
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The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
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Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
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Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

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Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
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Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

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Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

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