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Paris police chief sacked after Champs-Elysees rioting

Paris - The French government sacked the top police official in Paris on Monday following another weekend of rioting in the capital during "yellow vest" protests which have put President Emmanuel Macron on the defensive.

France scrambles for police response to 'yellow vest' violence

Paris - The French government's failure to keep Paris protests over the weekend from spiralling out of control has put a harsh spotlight on its law enforcement strategy, which makes avoiding injuries a priority even after hours of rampant destruction and looti...

France's 'yellow vest' protesters back on the streets, police respond with teargas

Paris - France's "yellow vest" protesters took to the streets on Saturday, for the 16th straight weekend, some clashing with police who responded with rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannon.

Retailer Decathlon cancels plans to sell sport 'hijab' in France

Paris - Retailer Decathlon Tuesday cancelled plans to sell a sports version of the hijab Muslim headscarf in France, following an outcry.

Macron 'yellow vest' concessions harming state finances: auditors

Paris - The 10-billion-euro ($11.4 billion) package of measures for low earners announced by President Emmanuel Macron to try end the "yellow vest" revolt has "weakened" France's finances, state auditors warned Wednesday.

Obstacles litter privatization path in Brazil under Bolsonaro

Rio De Janeiro - An ambitious privatization plan by the incoming government of Brazil's president-elect Jair Bolsonaro faces some challenges, not least from a cadre of ex-military men in the cabinet and reticent lawmakers.

Merkel says German 'Mittelstand' mustn't fall behind in AI race

Nuremberg - Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday warned that Germany's vaunted "Mittelstand" must not fall behind in the digital era, as the economic powerhouse races to catch up to foreign rivals in new technologies like artificial intelligence.

Spanish PM promises to keep investing in Cuba on historic visit

Havana - Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez promised on Friday to continue investing in Cuba on the second day of his historic visit to the island nation, the first by a Spanish leader in 32 years.

Cuba set to debate draft constitution paving way for gay marriage

Havana - A draft new constitution for Cuba that paves the way for same-sex marriage as well as the right to private property was ready to go before lawmakers on Thursday for fine-tuning ahead of a referendum next year.

Macron shows humbler side as rural protests loom in France

Paris - President Emmanuel Macron has promised to attune himself more to grassroots France as he tries to dispel a reputation for arrogance and rekindle his flagging popularity.

Returning Cubans boost island's real estate market

Havana - In shorts and wearing shoes but no socks, Mauricio Garcia could pass for a tourist as he strolls around Old Havana.

Generals, 'Chicago boy' loom large in Brazil's next government

Rio De Janeiro - Brazil's far-right President-elect Jair Bolsonaro is likely to tap army generals and an ultra-free-market economist for key roles in his cabinet.

Tens of thousands rally to defend France's social model

Paris - Around 160,000 people joined demonstrations across France Tuesday, the interior ministry said, heeding union calls for President Emmanuel Macron to "maintain the social model" under threat from austerity reforms.

3,000 march in Moscow against unpopular pension reforms

Moscow - About 3,000 people demonstrated in Moscow on Saturday against deeply unpopular government plans to raise the retirement age, which have sparked public anger.

Macron plugs holes in cabinet as popularity sinks

Paris - French President Emmanuel Macron was forced to make two quick changes to his cabinet Tuesday after a second popular minister resigned in a week, the latest setback as the centrist leader battles record-low ratings.

Experts see hope after fresh spate of Latin American corruption scandals

Montevideo - With huge new scandals rocking the political elite in Argentina and Peru, and several former Central American presidents in court, Latin America is once again being buffeted by a wave of corruption.

'Humble' Macron responds to critics in state of the union address

Versailles - Seen by critics as arrogant and uncaring, French President Emmanuel Macron struck a humble note Monday while defending his pro-business approach in his annual address to both houses of parliament.

Macron to lay out next phase of reforms as criticism mounts

Paris - President Emmanuel Macron will gather both houses of parliament at the opulent Versailles Palace on Monday for what has become an annual address on his plans for overhauling wide swathes of French society and institutions.

Argentine small businesses feel pinch as consumers tighten belts

Buenos Aires - President Mauricio Macri's center-right government is struggling to stabilize inflation and reassure markets, but Argentina's small businesses are feeling the pinch in a climate of deep budget cuts and layoffs.

US Supreme Court deals major blow to American unions

Washington - The US Supreme Court on Wednesday dealt a major blow to American organized labor, ruling that public sector unions cannot charge non-members fees to cover the costs of collective bargaining.

Italy's populist parties to name future premier pick

Rome - Italy's anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S) and the far-right League party prepared Monday to present their pick for future premier of the country's nascent populist government after months of deadlock.

Italian parties agree on nominee for prime minister

Rome - The leader of Italy's far-right League party on Sunday announced that it had reached an agreement with the anti-establishment Five Star Movement on their nominee to be the country's next prime minister.

Peso crisis highlights fragility of Argentina's economy

Buenos Aires - Argentina appears to have resolved, at least in the short term, the crisis over the peso and its depreciation by taking drastic action -- but analysts warn the policy is untenable over time.

Global economy to grow faster than expected in 2018-19,at 3.2 percent: UN

New York - The global economy is set to expand faster than expected in 2018 and 2019, the United Nations said Thursday, predicting a new a growth rate of 3.2 percent.

Top US court rules for Arab Bank in Israel attack case

Washington - Victims of attacks in Israel cannot use an 18th century law to sue the Arab Bank, a multinational financial institution, the US Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday in a precedent-setting case for other foreign businesses.

EU opens door for Balkan states, but hurdles remain

Belgrade - The European Union has offered some of the six Balkan states who hope to join the bloc the prospect of becoming new members by 2025, but warned them they still have many obstacles to overcome.

Poland in the EU: challenging times for a dream come true

Warsaw - Poland's entry into the European Union in 2004 was a dream come true just 15 years after it shed communism, but today its rightwing government is posing an unprecedented challenge to the authority of Brussels in enforcing democratic standards, includin...

Thousands protest austerity measures in Brazil

S - Several thousand Brazilians demonstrated on Friday as part of a day of national mobilization against government austerity measures, including a labor law that will soon come into effect.

US sanctions help push Venezuela to default

Washington - US sanctions against Venezuela have accelerated the already catastrophic decline of the oil-rich nation's economy, and are pushing it to a debt default that economists say could happen as early as this week.

Bridge of discord between Croatia and Bosnia

- Pero Brbora farms his shellfish in Croatia but has to cross the border into Bosnia, and out again, to sell them in his homeland.
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