French press review 26 March 2010

Friday's French newspapers look ahead to Saturday's No-Sarkozy day, rifts between President Nicolas Sarkozy and Prime Minister François Fillon, the Greek bailout and the arrest of Victoire Ingabiré.

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The inside pages of Libération remind us in an article that tomorrow is in fact No-Sarkozy day.

Like No-Berlusconi day in Italy, the media are invited to not mention the S-word and there will be protests across the country against President S.

The article highlights the recent flurry of No Days, such as No-Life, No-Meat, No-Sex or most recently No-Pants (meaning trousers not underpants), which we saw in New York, Paris and London.

Remains to be seen if Sarkozy himself will respect the day and hide in a cupboard for 24 hours.

A couple of newspapers are leading with eurozone leader’s decision yesterday to bail out the struggling Greeks, should push come to shove.

Le Figaro hails the european agreement to save Greece, while leftist Libération is disappointed with what it is calling the German ball and chain that’s slowing down the economic recovery of Greece.

This morning's edition of Le Monde leads with more news of the growing rift between President Nicholas Sarkozy and his Prime Minister François Fillon.

We all know that Sarko's UMP party got a bashing in the regional elections and we also know that the President's popularity is in the gutter at the moment.

What is beginning to emerge, according to Le Monde, is the fact that their relationship has gone from one of conflict, to being one of rivals.

On Monday, Sarkozy reportedly forbade Fillon from appearing on the news on France's main TF1 television channel. Presumably because the president now sees his PM as a possible hurdle to clear before the 2012 presidential elections.

François Fillon was told earlier this week that he will no longer have a job come September, once he finishes reforms on the age of retirement.

And that, says Le Monde, will be perfect timing for him to begin his presidential campaign. Watch this space.

Elsewhere in Le Monde is an article which questions the arrest of Victoire Ingabiré this week, a possible candidate in Rwanda's upcoming presidential elections in August.

Officially she was accused of genocide denial, under a fuzzy law which forbids talk about ethnicity in relation to the 1994 genocide.

But, says Le Monde, what Ingabiré said was that people who committed crimes against the Hutus should also be judged.

Amnesty International say this is stifling freedom of expression in the country.

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