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Le Président

Nicolas Sarkozy was elected president of France in 2007, running on a center-right platform promising to liberalize the French economy. The charismatic and image-conscious president has thrust himself into international negotiations over the release of political prisoners and the Middle East conflict.

The World from Berlin: Le Pen's Result 'Is a Blemish on French Democracy'

The World from Berlin: Le Pen's Result 'Is a Blemish on French Democracy'

SPIEGEL ONLINE - April 23, 2012

Socialist challenger François Hollande may have got the biggest share of the vote in the first round of the French presidential election, but the real winner seems to be right-wing populist Marine Le Pen. German commentators argue that incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy only has himself to blame for his poor showing. more... Comment ]

Interview with Luxembourg Foreign Minister: Franco-German Border Plan 'Stinks to High Heaven'

Interview with Luxembourg Foreign Minister: Franco-German Border Plan 'Stinks to High Heaven'

SPIEGEL ONLINE - April 23, 2012

In an interview with SPIEGEL, Luxembourg Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn attacks a Franco-German plan to allow Schengen-zone countries to temporarily re-introduce border controls. The move is a populist ploy by French President Nicolas Sarkozy to secure his re-election, says Asselborn. more...

Presidential Election: French Voters Show Their Anger with Sarkozy

Presidential Election: French Voters Show Their Anger with Sarkozy

SPIEGEL ONLINE - April 23, 2012

Socialist challenger Francois Hollande has beaten incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy in the first round of the French presidential election. The result is a sign of how frustrated the French are with the state of their country, and how angry they are with Sarkozy. Hollande now has to appeal to supporters of far-right candidate Marine Le Pen if he wants to win the second round. A Commentary by Mathieu von Rohr more... Comment ]

Border-Free Travel: Germany and France Seek Reintroduction of Controls

Border-Free Travel: Germany and France Seek Reintroduction of Controls

SPIEGEL ONLINE - April 20, 2012

Germany and France want to weaken Europe's border-free travel agreement, according to a Friday newspaper report. Berlin and Paris would like to be able to temporarily reintroduce border controls due to concerns about illegal immigration. The move is not, a Berlin official assures, to be seen as re-election campaign help for Sarkozy. more...

French-German Relations: What a Hollande Victory Would Mean for Merkel

French-German Relations: What a Hollande Victory Would Mean for Merkel

SPIEGEL ONLINE - April 19, 2012

German Chancellor Merkel has made it clear that she would like to see French President Nicolas Sarkozy win a second term. Indeed, if his challenger François Hollande emerges victorious in the country's upcoming election, she could face isolation in Europe. But a Sarkozy re-election might be problematic, too. By Veit Medick and Severin Weiland more...

Big Promises and Bigger Illusions: Personalities Trump Policies in French Presidential Campaign

Big Promises and Bigger Illusions: Personalities Trump Policies in French Presidential Campaign

SPIEGEL ONLINE - April 17, 2012

French voters go to the polls for the first round of the presidential election on Sunday. So far, it's been a strange campaign in which personalities have played a bigger role than the country's troubled economy. The French media have focused primarily on the fate of President Nicolas Sarkozy -- a fate which remains uncertain. By Mathieu von Rohr in Paris more... Comment ]

Veering Right in the Final Sprint: Sarkozy Courts Populism in Run-Up to Election

Veering Right in the Final Sprint: Sarkozy Courts Populism in Run-Up to Election

SPIEGEL ONLINE - April 10, 2012

As the French election campaign enters its last two weeks, President Nicolas Sarkozy is courting right-wing extremist voters. In his neck-and-neck race against Socialist Party candidate François Hollande, they could decide the outcome. By Stefan Simons in Paris more... Comment ]

First Contacts with Hollande Camp: Merkel Braces for Possible Sarkozy Election Defeat

First Contacts with Hollande Camp: Merkel Braces for Possible Sarkozy Election Defeat

SPIEGEL ONLINE - March 30, 2012

Angela Merkel initially refused to receive French presidential candidate François Hollande when he offered a meeting recently. But as his victory against Nicolas Sarkozy seems more likely, the German Chancellery has made its first contacts with the Socialist Party politician's camp. After all, Berlin and Paris must stick together. By Florian Gathmann and Stefan Simons more...

The President and the Terrorist: Toulouse Attacks Boost Sarkozy's Election Chances

The President and the Terrorist: Toulouse Attacks Boost Sarkozy's Election Chances

SPIEGEL ONLINE - March 26, 2012

The deadly attacks in Toulouse have not only shaken France, but have also changed the course of the presidential election campaign. Before the brutal murders, President Nicolas Sarkozy was struggling in the polls. But calling for unity in reaction to the crisis, he's now gained new momentum and confidence. By Mathieu von Rohr more...

Election Help No Longer Wanted: Merkel Annoyed at Sarkozy's Campaign U-Turn

Election Help No Longer Wanted: Merkel Annoyed at Sarkozy's Campaign U-Turn

SPIEGEL ONLINE - March 19, 2012

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is annoyed at French President Nicolas Sarkozy for no longer wanting her help in his re-election campaign, SPIEGEL has learned. She had agreed to make joint appearances with him in the run-up to the April 22 vote, but he has changed his mind because their alliance isn't boosting his poll ratings. more...