Marine Le Pen,  leader of far-right Front National. She denounces dire forecasts as fear-mongering by her opponents. Photograph: Mathieu Cugnot/EPA

Victory for Marine Le Pen would mark political revolution capable of sinking project

French presidential candidates François Fillon (Les Républicains),  Emmanuel Macron (En Marche!),  Jean-Luc Mélenchon (La France Insoumise),  Marine Le Pen (Front National)  and  Benoît Hamon (French Socialist party). Photograph: Patrick Kovarik/AFP/Getty Images

Le Pen was aggressive and sarcastic, Fillon showed poise, and Macron appeared a novice

French presidential election candidate for the En Marche! movement  Emmanuel Macron  ahead of a wide-ranging televised debate that went on until well after midnight. Photograph:  Eliot Blondet/AFP/Getty Images

Emmanuel Macron accused by Marine Le Pen of ‘mind-boggling emptiness’

Marine Le Pen, French National Front party leader: “I have no Nazis around me.”  Photograph: Jean-Paul Pelissier

Le Pen’s efforts to legitimise Front National undermined by ideology of associates

 Police  help  students leave the scene of the  shooting at Lycee Alexis de Tocqueville  in Grasse, near Cannes, southern France, on Thursday. Photograph: Olivier Anrigo/EPA

Teenage gunman obsessed by Columbine massacre in US but has ‘no link’ to terrorism

Leo Varadkar has said spending limits should be imposed on those participating in the leadership contest. Photograph: Oliver Hoslet/EPA

Minister says there should be spending limits for candidates in Fine Gael leadership race

Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar has criticised a push by Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin for the unification of Ireland. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times.

Minister believes parties trying to exploit Brexit and approach will alienate unionists

 François Fillon leaves his apartment in Paris on Wednesday. His failure to declare a controversial secret loan  is the least of the alleged offences for which he was placed under investigation on Tuesday. Photograph: Yoan Valat/EPA

François Fillon the first presidential candidate to be placed under judiciary investigation

Campaign posters of French presidential election candidate Emmanuel Macron.  Photograph: Pascal Pavani/AFP/Getty

Director of France’s oldest polling company thinks Le Pen will be defeated in run-off

Marine Le Pen (left) of the French far-right Front National  party  speaks at a gathering hosted by small businesses group Ethic. Photograph: Geoffroy Van Der Hasselt/AFP/Getty Images

Right-wing presidential candidate says she will resign if she fails to take France out of euro

French senate president Gerard Larcher makes a statement at conservative party Les Républicains’ headquarters after a meeting to discuss the presidential candidacy of Francois Fillon. Photograph: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

French conservative party abandons attempted move against presidential nominee

Former French prime minister François Fillon: Six weeks into “Penelopegate” opinion polls indicate he will be eliminated in the first round on April 23rd. Photograph: Reuters

Corruption scandal consumes conservative nominee weeks before voting begins

French presidential candidate Francois Fillon delivers a speech at a rally in Paris on Sunday. Photograph: Philippe Wojazer/Reuters

The beleaguered conservative presidential candidate attracts thousands of supporters

The Palais Rose, a pink-marble reproduction of the Versailles Trianon, was the last of the belle époque palaces, an the scene of many lavish soirees.

The French count burned through $10 million of his American heiress wife’s fortune. Their treasures are for sale for the first ti(...)

Emmanuel Macron unveils his election manifesto in Paris on Thursday. Photograph: Christian Hartmann/Reuters

Supporters are fleeing Francois Fillon as Emmanuel Macron presents his manifesto

French conservative presidential candidate François Fillon is currently running third in polls, after the Front National candidate, Marine Le Pen, and the independent centrist Emmanuel Macron. Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters.

Conservative candidate says summons over scheme is ‘political assassination’

Alain Philippe and Gérard Marchand, the deputy mayor and mayor of Brachay. “I’m not a racist, but you ask yourself if you’re in your own country,” Marchand says. Photograph: Anne-Elisabeth Crédeville

The far-right Front National leader has forged a strong bond with this tiny commune

French presidential  candidate  Marine Le Pen saluted Trump’s “realism and determination to change things”. Photograph: Bertrand Guay/AFP/Getty Images

Front National leader’s popularity continues to grow, despite scandal over assistants

Presidential hopeful Emmanuel Macron  in Algiers.  He told an Algerian television station that colonial France had committed crimes against humanity. Photograph:   STRSTR/AFP/Getty Images

Presidential candidate’s remarks on gay marriage and Algeria raise hackles

Marion Maréchal Le Pen: The niece of presidential candidate  Marine Le Pen described rival Emmanuel Macron as the “candidate of repentance” over his comments about French colonisation of Algeria. Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

French presidential campaign reignites dispute over country’s legacy in north Africa

 François Hollande visits the exhibition, Mission Île de la cité: le cœur du cœur, at the Conciergerie in Paris. Photograph: Reuters/Gonzalo Fuentes

Historic Île de la Cité to become ‘a real neighbourhood’ if architect has his way

French president Francois Hollande and labour minister Myriam El Khomri (behind him) on a visit on Tuesday to the Paris suburb of Aubervilliers. Photograph: Stephane de Sakutin/AFP via Getty

Focus on police identity checks in marginalised areas as government appeals for calm

French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron, during a   two-day visit to Algeria – his campaign has accused Russia of attempting to sabotage the campaign. Photograph: STR/AFP/Getty Images

Kremlin denies hacking ‘En marche!’ website of presidential favourite hostile to Russia

French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron: media are critical of his “vagueness”. Photograph: Eddy Lemaistre/EPA

Presidential candidate of ‘extreme centre’ forecast to beat Marine Le Pen in elections

France’s presidential race: Marine Le Pen at a Front National rally. Photograph: Sylvain Lefevre/Getty

Marine Le Pen, leader of the far-right Front National, is polling strongly in France’s presidential race. Can she emulate Donald T(...)

  Cédric Herrou  after his trial for illegally assisting migrants, in Nice, France: “The five-year-old kid who is repeatedly sent back across the border and who’s afraid of the police; what will happen to him 20 years from now? Poverty creates terrorism.” Photograph: Sebastien Nogier/EPA

Bringing people across border is ‘an honour, not a sacrifice’, says local hero Herrou

People gather in central Paris to protest against an alleged police assault on a black man while in their custody. Photograph: Geoffroy van der Hasselt/AFP/Getty

French youths in the Paris banlieues rioting over police brutality and alleged rape

French  presidential candidate Francois Fillon holds a press conference on the scandals surrounding his campaign. Photograph: Philippe Wojazer/EPA

Rival presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron forced to dismiss affair rumours

Nicolas Sarkozy has been accused of surpassing the €22.5m legal ceiling on campaign expenditure by spending at least €42.8m on his 2012 campaign. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Former French president could face year in jail or fine if convicted over election financing

Francois Fillon, presidential candidate of France’s main conservative party Les Républicains. “What was acceptable yesterday is no longer accepted . . . It was an error. I profoundly regret it and I present my excuses to the French.” Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Former favourite for presidency offers robust defence in fake jobs scandal

Far-right leader and presidential candidate Marine Le Pen speaking in Lyon on Sunday. Photograph: Michel Euler/AP

Front National leader delivers inflammatory speech as candidates begin campaigning

French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron: illusory hope? Photograph: Yoan Valat/EPA

Moderate socialists battling for survival in face of globalisation and political extremism

French police officers patrol  the courtyard of the Louvre museum after a soldier was attacked in Paris. Photograph: Christophe Ena/AP Photo

Officials say assault on four soldiers at Louvre museum was of ‘terrorist character’

François Fillon: The presidential candidate  visits a  creche in Poix-Terron on Thursday even as the “Penelope-gate” investigation was expanded to include his two children. Photograph: François Nascimbeni/AFP/Getty Images

Candidate’s wife appears to contradict husband’s claim she was legitimate employee

A 40-year-old Frenchman has been detained in connection with the alleged drugging and rape of a 20-year-old Irishwoman last summer.

Alleged assault took place last summer when 20-year-old was taking care of child

François Fillon: The  presidential candidate of the French centre-right claims he is a victim of “an institutional coup d’etat” by the socialist government. Photograph: Reuters/Christian Hartmann

Presidential contender sinks in polls as nation agog at ‘Penelope-gate’ jobs scandal

Emmanuel Macron and Ségolène Royal: François Hollande’s former domestic partner judged “this little one” Macron to be presidential material. Photograph: Thomas Samson/AFP/Getty Images

Presidential candidates thrash out alliances while Fillon struggles with wife’s job scandals

Benoit Hamon greets supporters in Paris on Sunday after winning the Socialist party presidential nomination. Photograph: AP Photo/François Mori

Front National and Les Républicains may edge out both establishment parties in first round

Benoit Hamon, who yesterday saluted “the living, vibrant left” and promised to unite socialists and ecologists. Photograph: Christophe Archambault/AFP/Getty Images

Far-left candidate easily beats Valls in primary as Fillon struggles over scandal

A man works with figures of presidential candidates Marine Le Pen, Francois Fillon  and Emmanuel Macron in Nice, southeastern France, during the preparation of the 133rd Nice Carnival. Photograph: Valery Hache/AFP/Getty Images

Former favourite for presidency François Fillon discredited by payments made to wife

French right-wing presidential candidate François Fillon with his wife Penelope during a rally in Paris last November.  Photograph: Francois Mori/AP

France candidate under investigation over news that wife was paid €600,000 as aide

Benoît Hamon wants to legalise cannabis and euthanasia, recruit 40,000 more teachers and make France more welcoming to refugees. Photograph: Jeremy Lempin/EPA

Likely presidential candidate Benoît Hamon wants a universal basic income

Former French minister Benoit Hamon: he   won 36.12 per cent of the ballot, with more than half of the votes counted in the French socialist presidential primary. Former prime minister Manuel Valls  came in second with 31.24 per cent of the vote. Photograph: Jacky Naegelen/Reuters

Benoit Hamon unlikely to survive first round of presidential election on April 23rd

Manuel Valls receives make-up while Arnaud Montebourg prepares for the final TV debate in the French left’s presidential primary. Photograph: Eric Feferberg/AP

Favourite Socialist candidate Manuel Valls predicted to win only 10% of vote in election

Emmanuel Macron, head of the political movement En marche! and candidate for this year’s French presidential election. Photograph: Pascal Rossignol/Reuters

The Independent candidate has growing momentum despite Marine Le Pen’s taunts

Late French academician Michel Déon.

Crowd of 700 told three words summarise Déon - charm, friendship and books

US secretary of state John Kerry with Ireland’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan, right, and other foreign ministers and representatives in Paris. Photograph: Bertrand Guay/AP

Foreign ministers and international bodies reaffirm need for a ‘two-state solution’

Le Canard enchaîné editor Érik Emptaz: “In France, no media make profits on the internet.”

Advertising-free ‘Canard enchaîné’ sells 400,000 copies and has €100 million banked

 Mahmoud Abbas with  Binyamin Netanyahu in  2016. Mr Mahmoud will meet French leaders, but Mr Netanyahu has refused to attend the conference. Photograph: Amos Ben Gershom/GPO via Getty Images

Meeting aims to portray international consensus on necessity of two-state solution

Alois Brunner: The Austrian Nazi, responsible for the deaths of an estimated 130,000 Jews, died locked up  in a squalid Damascus basement, a French magazine has reported. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

The fate of Alois Brunner, blamed for the death of 130,000, has always been a mystery

This file photo taken at the Rue Tronchet, near Madeleine, central Paris, on October 3rd, 2016, where US reality television star Kim Kardashian was robbed at gunpoint by assailants. Photograph: Thomas Samson/AFP/Getty Images

Five masked men made away with jewellery after heist at TV star’s Paris apartment

Marine Le Pen, FN leader and a candidate in France’s presidential election. “If we have peaceful relations between the US, France and Russia, it will be good for the entire world,” Photograph: Charly Triballeau/AFP/Getty Images

Front National leader targets oligarchies, global trade and European Union

Danse, Morob: Olwen Fouéré in Laurent Gaudé’s play. Photograph: Luca Truffarelli

The actor’s role in ‘Danse, Morob’, a play that touches on the dirty protests of the Maze and other traumas, explores how revoluti(...)

François Hollande: The French president  with army chief of staff Gen Pierre de Villiers (left) and Hollande’s chief of staff, Gen Benoît Puga (right), on October 1st, 2014. Photograph: Alain Jocard/AFP/Getty Images)

François Hollande has followed Obama’s lead in ordering ‘targeted killing’ of jihadists

Marine Le Pen, leader of the French far-right Front National party, delivers her New Year’s wishes to the press in Paris on Wednesday. Photograph: Alain Jocard/AFP/Getty Images

Front National promises to “speak for the people” if she becomes president of France

A policeman  at Midi train station after the Brussels bombings in  March. Photograph: Christian Hartmann/Reuters

World in 2016 review: three distinct types of terror attack hit the West this year

Michel Déon with a portrait of himself in his home in Co Galway. In ‘La Chambre de Ton Pere’, Déon recounted how the portrait was painted. Photograph: Lara Marlowe

Novelist moved to Ireland in 1968 and his best-known works are partially or totally set here

Elaine Mernagh in Calais: “If I arrived in a foreign country, apart from food and shelter, I’d want to hear someone say: ‘I’m happy that you’re safe.”

From day one, Mernagh of Cork Refuge Solidarity felt she belonged in the ‘Jungle’

Eoin Staunton: “We had such a good time there. It was definitely a good summer. It didn’t destroy that.”

Eoin Staunton (22) from Mayo spent the summer working in Nice, where tragedy struck

Pierre Louis Baudey-Vignaud, the son of murdered Frenchwoman Sophie Toscan du Plantier in Bantry, west Cork. Photograph: Daragh McSweeney/Provision

Twenty years after this mother’s death near Schull, her son has not given up on justice

Managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Christine Lagarde in court in Paris last week. Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters

No sentence for IMF head for failure to oppose €403m payment to Bernard Tapie

Managing director of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde stands before the start of her trial about a state payout in 2008 to a French businessman, at the courts in Paris. Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters

IMF head unflustered despite accusation of negligence over state’s €400m arbitration

The poet John Montague who has died in France. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Leading figure in Irish contemporary literature published more than 30 books

Newly appointed French prime minister Bernard Cazeneuve: This is the second time that he  has followed Valls, having replaced him at the interior ministry when Valls became prime minister in  2014 . Photograph: Thomas Samson/AFP/Getty

Short-term stand-in Bernard Cazeneuve managed aftermath of 2015-16 terror attacks

French prime minister Manuel Valls delivers a speech to announce his bid to become the Socialist presidential candidate in the 2017 presidential election, as his wife Anne Gravoin (left) listens, at the town hall of Évry, south of Paris. Photograph: Bertrand Guay/AFP/Getty Images

Other candidates are using Hollande’s record in office to attack the prime minister

Although François Hollande will remain France’s head of state for another five months, his announcement that he will not seek re-election as president marks his political death. File photograph: Yoan Valat/AFP/Getty Images

President’s decision not to seek re-election widely welcomed on both left and right

France’s minister for foreign affairs Jean-Marc Ayrault with the Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan in Paris on Thursday

French minister warns against post-Brexit ‘à la carte union’ during Charlie Flanagan visit

French President Francois Hollande makes a televised address from the Elysee Palace on Thursday evening. Photograph: Reuters

Hollande makes televised address to announce decision not to seek second term

France’s minister for foreign affairs Jean-Marc Ayrault and Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan: Mr Ayrault has thanked Mr Flanagan for making contacts with Israelis and Palestinians.

Jean-Marc Ayrault briefs Charlie Flanagan on plan to convene conference by end of year

T-shirts  for sale in a souvenir shop in Jerusalem. Israel’s “incredible” and “generous” offers to Palestinians have been repeatedly rejected, Donald Trump has claimed. Photograph: Ahmad Gharabli/AFP/Getty Images

President-elect sees ‘peace’ between Israel and the Palestinians as the ultimate deal

 François Fillon:  Marine Le Pen called her rival “the spokesman for all the worst the EU has produced”. Photograph: Ian Langsdon/EPA

Former prime minister set to take on Marine Le Pen as socialist infighting continues

Former prime minister Francois Fillon is now the man most likely to be elected France’s next president. Photograph: Philippe Wojazer/Reuters

Juppé concedes defeat in conservative contest while rival goes on to challenge Le Pen

Alain Juppé  and François Fillon: The former prime ministers have knocked heads over immigration and the economy in the run-off of France’s right-wing presidential primary. Photographs: Joel Saget/AFP/Getty Images

François Fillon in pole postion to become presidential candidate for Les Républicains

Marguerite and Georges Bouniol, parents of Sophie Toscan du Plantier, at their home in Paris.

New arrest warrant issued for Ian Bailey as 20th anniversary of murder approaches

French presidential election centre-right candidates Alain Juppé and François Fillon face a run-off next Sunday. Photograph: Eric Feferberg/AFP/Getty Images

Former prime minister’s big win in Sunday’s primary seen as return of traditional right

French politician François Fillon: More than 80 per cent of those who voted for Sarkozy said they would transfer their vote to the resilient risk-taker, not Juppé.  Photograph: Thibault Camus/Pool/Reuters

PM under Sarkozy based comeback on €110bn in spending cuts and social conservatism

Véronique Roy  suspects her son was killed in a suicide attack, because “they tell them if they die that way, they can bring their parents to paradise with them”

Véronique Roy, whose child died as a jihadi in Syria, is leading the attack on radicalisation

François Fillon: heading for a landslide victory. Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters

Ex-president says he will back frontrunner François Fillon in Les Républicains runoff

Three of a kind? Nicolas Sarkozy, Alain Juppé and François Fillon eye main chance. Photographs: Getty Images/Reuters

Nicolas Sarkozy, Alain Juppé and François Fillon vie for chance to counter rise of Le Pen

Former French economy minister Emmanuel Macron announcing his candidacy for next year’s presidential election on Wednesday. Photograph: Philippe Lopez/AFP/Getty Images

Former economy minister’s announcement antagonises rivals on left and right

French president François Hollande and mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo unveil a commemorative plaque in front of the Comptoir Voltaire cafe  in Paris on Sunday,  during a ceremony to mark the first anniversary of the Paris terror attacks. Photograph: Christophe Petit Tesson/AFP/Getty

Commemorations at Stade de France, Bataclan and cafes where 130 people were killed

Stéphane Lissner, director of the Opéra National de Paris. Photograph: Elisa Haberer  Stéphane Lissner, director of the Opéra National de Paris. Photograph: Elisa Haberer

Stéphane Lissner, the director of the French national opera, is going all out to recruit new opera-lovers

A  farmer walks past solar panels  in Tafoughalt, Morocco: the country is hosting  the first international climate summit since the Paris accord.  Photograph: Fadel Senna/AFP/Getty Images

US president-elect has promised to tear up the Paris climate accord ratified last year

Supporters of Donald Trump rally in front of the White House in Washington. Photograph: Joshua Roberts/Reuters

Anger and disillusionment that propelled Trump to power is an epidemic in the West

Migrants stand with their belongings near policemen during an evacuation of a makeshift camp near Stalingrad metro station in Paris on Friday. Photograph: Lionel Bonaventure/AFP/Getty Images

The ‘Paris Jungle’ was home to nearly 4,000 people who have now been evacuated

Moroccan-French author Leila Slimani arrives at the Drouant restaurant after she received the Prix Goncourt, in Paris, France, today. Photograph: Jacky Naegelen/Reuters

Leila Slimani wins the Prix Goncourt and Prix Renaudot awarded to Yasmina Reza

Garda trainees receive an allowance of €184 per week for their first 32 weeks. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Police in France and Spain have staged protests and withdrawn from some duties

Unaccompanied migrant minors, from the demolished Jungle migrant camp in Calais, prepare to board a bus to travel to reception centres around France on Wednesday morning. Photograph:   Philippe Huguen/AFP/Getty Images

Children dispersed around France, possibly complicating proposal to bring 200 to Ireland

Migrants at the site of the Calais “Jungle” camp. Fifteen hundred unaccompanied minors are living temporarily in containers in the French port town. Photograph: Philippe Huguen/AFP/Getty Images

‘They haven’t said they want to go to Ireland,’ says interior ministry figure

Newly elected Lebanese president Michel Aoun reviews the honour guards upon arrival to the presidential palace in Baabda, near Beirut, on Monday. Photograph: Aziz Taher/Reuters

Election of military man (81) with support of Syria ends 2½ years of political stalemate

Migrants with their suitcases in the Calais Jungle camp. Photograph: Philippe Hugen/AFP/Getty

Calm prevails throughout camp as first buses depart for reception centres across the country

 Detail from La Lecture, 1877, by  Henri Fantin-Latour. Photograph: Alain Basset/© Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon

The first monographic exhibition in Paris since 1982 of the neglected 19th century master

The formal investigations in France following the death of Munster head coach Anthony Foley near Paris last Sunday are expected to take several weeks to complete, according to a local official. Photograph: Patrick Bolger/Reuters.

Official says no evidence to ‘suspect anything untoward’ happened to late Munster head coach

Anthony Foley, the late Munster rugby head coach, died of acute pulmonary oedema caused by heart disease, the French coroner’s report issued on Tuesday concluded. Photograph: INPHO/James Crombie.

Munster head coach’s remains will be flown home to Shannon Airport on Wednesday

 Three Women (1908), by  Pablo Picasso, comes from the Hermitage museum in Saint-Petersburg.

After being trapped behind the Iron Curtain, Russia’s Shchukin collection, including works by Picasso and Matisse, is back in Par(...)

Andrew O’Halloran, Thomondgate, Limerick, signs the book of condolence in honour of Anthony Foley as a large queue froms at Limerick’s City Hall. Photograph: Alan Place

Minister for Finance and bishop join tributes to late Munster coach

Anthony Foley played more than 200 times for Munster and 62 times for Ireland. File photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Once autopsy is completed Munster head coach will be released to his family

  Presidential candidates ex-prime minister Alain Juppe, Nathalie Kosciusko- Morizet, and ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy  during the  Les Républicains TV debate. Photograph: Philippe Wojazer/ AFP/Getty Images

Ex-prime minister Alain Juppé edges ahead of six rivals in Les Républicains TV debate

François Hollande: the French president said in 2012 that he regretted the “ghettoisation” of the Les Bleus national football team. Photograph: Yoan Valat/AFP/Getty Images

President manages to offend almost everyone, including judges, footballers and his ex

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