France-Luxembourg: the ‘steel friendship’ in Esch-sur-Alzette
25 February 2022 | 2:08 pm
Luxembourg’s second-largest city, Esch-sur-Alzette, is a community with a heavy industrial past. It’s located near the French border and sits as a monument to the country’s 20th century steel industry boom. Its numerous post-industrial brownfields bear witness to that, as well as its multiculturalism: 120 nationalities live here, including one in particular: the French. Many of them migrated to the Grand Duchy decades ago to work in the country’s successful steel industry.
In a week when France has been at the forefront of EU news thanks to heated exchanges between President Macron and Members of the European Parliament, we speak to leading French MEP from the president's political group, Fabienne Keller. The former Strasbourg mayor tells FRANCE 24 Emmanuel Macron is "determined" to make progress on key issues including rule of law in the EU, and argues that he should be re-elected as French leader, saying "he needs five more years to finish the job".
This week, we're exploring a key question ahead of the upcoming presidential elections in France: "to vote or not to vote?" As the list of candidates gets longer, the race is on to drum up support. But voter apathy is still a major concern and increasing numbers of would-be voters are turning their backs on politicians and the political system. Our reporters went to one Paris suburb with a particularly high abstention rate to meet some who are adamant they're going nowhere near a polling station this spring.
For various experts, Storm Alex, which ravaged south-eastern France in October 2020, was a "weather bomb". In the area north of the city of Nice, torrential rain burst the banks of rivers. Entire houses were swept away in the current, sometimes with their owners inside. The 2,000 inhabitants of the village of Tende – perched high in the Roya valley – were cut off from the rest of the world, with no running water or electricity for several weeks. Supplies had to be brought in by helicopter. Since then, access has been restored. But not everyone has been able to return. More than a year later, Storm Alex has left catastrophic scars.
Bilingual schools across France are struggling to find people who can teach in German as English becomes more popular. A group of parents have set up a recruiting agency to help the government.
France is considered one of the top destinations in the world for winter sports, known as "les sports d'hiver". They're a major part of the country’s tourism industry. Ski culture goes beyond the slopes, and like many things in France, it also involves a lot of food. But has skiing become too expensive? And how can resorts cope with climate change? In this episode of French Connections Plus, Florence Villeminot and Genie Godula slalom the ins and outs of the white gold that is French skiing.
Every year, almost half a million visitors flock to Chantilly, one of France’s most beautiful castles. Located an hour from Paris and built in 1358, its princes greeted Louis XIV for sumptuous banquets. In the 19th century, Henri D’Orléans, Duke of Aumale, restored the château and turned it into an exceptional museum, containing the second-largest collection of paintings in France after the Louvre and more than 45,000 books. From restorers to gardeners and horseriders: behind the scenes, more than 100 people work every day on the upkeep of Chantilly. FRANCE 24 takes you to meet them.
France has never had a woman as president. With a number of female candidates in the election race this time, could that finally change? Challenges range from a #MeToo campaign to an "invisible" barrier to the top job.
We take a look at one means of assembling a deepfake video online for free and see how this technique has been used to disseminate fake videos of newscasts in Mali. This comes amid a rise in tensions between Bamako and Paris.
Known for kaleidoscopic synth-pop - or what they call "experimental sludge pop" - the duo behind Let’s Eat Grandma met when they were small children and have been making music together since their early teens. After two critically acclaimed albums, Rosa Walton and Jenny Hollingworth are set to drop a new LP in April. They tell France 24’s Florence Villeminot about “Two Ribbons”: an album about the gradual dissolution of a friendship, as well as grief and loss in general. We also look at new releases for British independent rock band Alt-J and Welsh musician and producer Cate Le Bon.
Since December, Russia has gradually amassed more than 100,000 troops along its border with Ukraine. Amid stalled talks between the US and Russia, French President Emmanuel Macron is embarking on a solo mission to Moscow and then Kyiv, insisting a diplomatic solution is still possible. For more on what to expect from this latest diplomatic push, we spoke to Natia Seskuria, Associate Fellow at the Royal United Services Institute. "Russia will not stop at Ukraine," she warned.
In the heart of France's Burgundy vineyards, where villages bear the names of grands crus such as Pommard, Nuit-Saint-Georges and Chablis, preparations are underway for the Saint-Vincent tournante wine festival; a tradition that goes back to the Middle Ages. Every year, in the last week of January, some 20,000 people are expected for the two-day festival. This time, the villages of Gilly-lès-Cîteaux and Vougeot are the lucky hosts. We catch up with Élisabeth, the head of the not-for-profit organisation, but also Bernard, a volunteer winegrower.
Emmanuel Macron is on a special trip to Moscow to meet and talk with Vladimir Putin. The mission: to try and calm matters on the Ukraine-Russia border and avoid what many analysts say is certain war. Macron is representing the EU, with France holding the rotating presidency. What influence does he take into these talks?
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