France. In January, the Union Government for a People’s Movement (UMP) appointed Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy as its candidate for the presidential election. Sitting President Jacques Chirac announced in March that he would not run for a third term. Sarkozy’s main opponent was the Socialist Party’s Ségolène Royal, but the temperature of the electoral movement rose when opinion polls in the spring showed an increasing support for François Bayrou, candidate for the bourgeois middle party Union for French Democracy (UDF).
In the first round of elections in April, Sarkozy won with 31 percent of the vote against 26 percent for Royal. Bayrou gained almost 19 percent and in fourth place came second in the last election, the Nationalist National Front’s leader Jean-Marie Le Pen, supported by just over 10 percent of voters.
According to CountryAAH, Paris is the capital city of France. Sarkozy also won in the second round of elections in May, with 53 percent of the vote against 47 percent for Royal. The new president promised “rupture” with traditional French politics, new economic momentum, a modernization of the labor market, tougher law enforcement and stricter immigration laws. New Prime Minister became François Fillon. The Foreign Minister’s post went somewhat unexpectedly to the socialist Bernard Kouchner, known as the founder of the aid organization Doctors Without Borders.
In June elections were held for the National Assembly. The UMP retained its majority and Sarkozy thus consolidated his victory. But the party did not gain as much overweight as expected but lost some mandate. The Socialist Party, on the other hand, progressed compared to the 2002 election.
In foreign policy, Sarkozy marked a clear approach to the United States, following the chilly relations that prevailed since its predecessor Chirac criticized the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. Sarkozy announced that France wanted to help find a political solution in Iraq. In his first major foreign policy speech in August, the president also said that the most serious crisis in the world was not Iraq but neighboring Iran and the dispute over its nuclear program.
In September, Sarkozy presented a reform package that was intended to save billions in the welfare system. Most noteworthy were announced changes in very favorable pension terms for public employees. Previous attempts to weaken conditions had led to such violent protests that the proposals had fallen, but Sarkozy promised to stand up to overcome the huge budget deficit. In October, the first massive protest against the new government began. It was mainly employees in the transport sector who went on strike, with paralyzed public transport as a result. Similar strikes were also carried out in November.
The promised new Immigration Act was adopted in October. stricter conditions for family immigration. Requirements were introduced for knowledge of the French language and knowledge of French values, and in addition it became possible to require foreigners DNA tests to prove kinship.
After a long period of speculation in French media, Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife Cécilia announced in October that they would apply for divorce. The media had, among other things, noted that the wife did not vote in the second round and that she was rarely seen by her husband.
France weather in March, April and May
Average daily temperatures between 11 ° C and 20 ° C can be expected over the next three months. It gets warmest in May in Bordeaux, while March is noticeably cooler in Brest.
Do you want to go on a beach holiday? The water temperatures are in March, April and May 10-14 ° C. So the weather is hardly suitable for swimming.
In March it rains depending on the region of 10 (Paris) to 16 days (Brest), in April to 9 (Paris) to 11 days (Bordeaux) and in May at 10 (Paris) to 11 days (Bordeaux).
In the period from March to May the sun shines on average between 4 and 8 hours a day. The sunniest weather is in Paris in May, but with less sun you will have to get by in Brest in March.
Paris – architecture and museums
The oldest major buildings are the terms of the Cluny Museum and the Arène de Lutèce arena east of the Panthéon, both from Roman times.
On Île de la Cité you will find other older buildings, including the Gothic cathedral Notre-Dame de Paris (1163-ca. 1345) and the courthouse Palais de Justice (14th century) with remains of the former royal palace, including the Gothic castle church Sainte-Chapelle (consecrated 1248).
Right Seinebred is dominated by the Louvre Art Museum, former royal residence castle, in 1988 expanded with a glass pyramid by IM Pei; the castle’s and museum’s building history dates from the 1200’s – 1900’s.
From here, the classic axis faces west across the Place de la Concorde to the Grand Palais and Petit Palais exhibition buildings, both built in neo-baroque style for the 1900 World’s Fair; The Eiffel Tower, designed by Gustave Eiffel, was constructed for the World’s Fair in 1889 as the engineering highlight of the time.
The axis continues towards Place Charles-de-Gaulle with Jean François Chalgrin’s triumphal arch, l’Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile (1836), to end in the district of La Défense with Johan Otto von Spreckelsen’s open cube, La Grande Arche (1989).
In the area north and northwest of the Louvre you will find the church of La Madeleine (consecrated 1842), modeled on Roman antiquity, in addition to Charles Garnier’s neo – baroque opera house (1875) and the former royal palace Palais-Royal (begun 1632).
To the east of the Louvre and the Forum des Halles are the postmodern Center of Art and Culture of Georges Rogers and Renzo Piano, Georges-Pompidou (1977); even further east are the Paris City Museum, the Musée Carnavalet, the Picasso Museum and the Hôtel de Ville (1882).
At Place de la Bastille is the Carlos Otts (b. 1946) Opéra de la Bastille (1989), and in the Montmartre district is the Sacré-Cœur church with Romanesque-Byzantine features (1919).
The domed roofs that characterize the city’s skyline are modeled on Roman architecture, including the neoclassical Panthéon (1789) in the Latin Quarter and the dome over the church at the Hôtel des Invalides building complex (founded 1670).
To the east is the town’s oldest church, Saint-Germain-des-Prés (1000’s). At the Seine to the southeast is Jean Nouvel’s Arab Institute (1987), which, like von Spreckelsen’s triumphal arch was among the architectural advances that François Mitterrand launched in 1989 in connection with the 200th anniversary of the French Revolution.
Dominique Perrault’s (b. 1953) new building for the Bibliothèque nationale de France from 1995 was the cornerstone of the series.
In addition to the Louvre, the city’s more than 100 museums include the Musée d’Orsay, the Cluny Museum and the Musée de l’homme, in addition to the many artist museums, including for Auguste Rodin and Honoré de Balzac.