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PARIS, August 13, 2018 (News Wires) — France plans to introduce a penalty system next year that would increase the costs of consumer goods with packaging made of non-recycled plastic, part of a pledge to use only recycled plastic nationwide by 2025, an environment ministry official said on Sunday.

Brune Poirson, secretary of state for ecological transition, said the move was one of several to be implemented in coming years, including a deposit-refund scheme for plastic bottles.

“Declaring war on plastic is not enough. We need to transform the French economy,” she told the Journal du Dimanche newspaper.

Under the new plan, products with recycled plastic packaging could cost up to 10 per cent less, Poirson said.

“When there’s a choice between two bottles, one made of recycled plastic and the other without, the first will be less expensive,” she said.

“When non-recycled plastic will cost more, that will eliminate much of the excessive packaging,” Poirson said.

Flore Berlingen of the association Zero Waste France told AFP: “We’re hoping that companies play along so that clients aren’t the ones penalised” by the new measure.

Emmanuel Guichard of the Elipso federation of plastic packaging makers gave a cautious welcome to the French plan.

“For bottles, giving consumers a choice is possible. But we can’t forget other items — today there’s no recycled plastic available for yogurt pots,” he said.

Ubiquitous images on social media of marine fauna suffocated by plastics, as well as initiatives such as “plastic attacks” — which see shoppers dump all the packaging of their purchases outside supermarkets — have begun to spur political responses around the world.

The French plan is “part of the solution, albeit incomplete, since it is only about recycling and not reducing plastic,” remarked Fanny Vismara, an organiser of “plastic attacks” in France.

She noted that glass, unlike plastic, is “infinitely recyclable”.

Berlingen added: “Recycling is necessary but not sufficient. We absolutely must cut off the flow and have more stringent measures against over-packaging and disposable objects.”

France currently recycles around 25 per cent of its plastic, according to the magazine 60 Million Consumers.

It has already outlawed single-use plastic bags in supermarkets unless they can be composted, hoping to encourage people to shop with their own bags.

PARIS, August 12, 2018 (News Wires) - Second-half substitute Radamel Falcao scored one goal and provided the assist for another as last season's runners-up AS Monaco cruised past Nantes 3-1 for a winning start to their Ligue 1 campaign.

Skipper Falcao came on after 67 minutes at the Stade de La Beaujoire and sparked Leonardo Jardim's team into action as they scored three times in 14 minutes to kill off the contest.

Attacking midfielder Rony Lopes got the opener, heading a deflected cross past Nantes goalkeeper Ciprian Tatarusanu in the 69th minute. Falcao's clever flick then helped fellow striker Stevan Jovetic double the lead 10 minutes from time.

Colombia international Falcao rounded off the scoring by running on to Samuel Grandsir's pass and neatly finishing in the 82nd minute. Nantes substitute Emiliano Sala pulled one back for the hosts in added time.

Newly-promoted Nimes Olympique marked their first top-flight match for 25 years with a comeback victory over Angers in a seven-goal thriller.

Nimes forward Clement Depres scored a brace while Sada Thioub and Renaud Ripart also found the net to cancel out strikes by Pierrick Capelle, Angelo Fulgini and Ismael Traore.

Former France and Arsenal midfielder Patrick Vieira began his career in charge of Nice with a tame 1-0 defeat by Stade Reims. Nice never recovered from Malian winger Moussa Doumbia's third minute goal.

St Etienne needed a late goal from French forward Lois Diony to seal a 2-1 victory over Guingamp. Wahbi Khazri had given 10-times Ligue 1 champions St Etienne the lead in the 45th minute before Guingamp equalised through Marcus Thuram, the son of former France defender Lilian Thuram.

Lille powered past Stade Rennais 3-1 while Dijon too began with a win by seeing off Montpellier 2-1.

 

MOSCOW, August 10, 2018 (MENA) - Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed in a telephone conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron the current situation in Syria.

The two leaders exchanged views on the ongoing developments in Syria, and praised the operation carried out by Russia and France in July to deliver and distribute humanitarian aid in the Syrian province of Eastern Ghouta, the Kremlin press service said in a statement on Friday.

Putin called on the international community to keep up its efforts to facilitate the restoration of Syria’s social and economic infrastructure, as well as to help refugees and internally displaced persons to return to their places of permanent residence.

 

 

BERLIN, August 7, 2018 (News Wires) - Police evacuated part of a terminal at Germany's busiest airport Tuesday after a security official mistakenly allowed a French family that hadn't completed required security checks into a secure area.

Federal police stopped flights from boarding and kept passengers out of area A of Frankfurt Airport's Terminal 1 for about two hours due to concerns that at least one person had entered without being properly screened.

Police said on Twitter that the midday evacuation was prompted by a security assistant mistakenly allowing the French family of four into the secure area even though they were supposed to be subject to a secondary screening.

The family was located, questioned and allowed to continue on its journey, the police added.

The terminal resumed operating as normal about two hours after the partial evacuation was imposed.

It wasn't immediately known how many people were affected by the precautions.

 

 

CAIRO, Aug 1, 2018 (MENA) - Egypt's Transport Minister Hisham Arafat conferred on Wednesday with French Ambassador to Egypt Stephane Romatet on means of bolstering cooperation in railway and metro projects.

A statement released by the Ministry of Transport said talks covered means of increasing safety measures in cooperation with SNCF, the French national railway company, along with an expected visit by Alstom company to check on Giza-Beni Suef railway line in the coming days.

The French Ambassador pointed out to a letter sent by the French government to Egypt to sign a cooperation protocol to supply trains for the third metro line. The French side also voiced readiness to take steps to provide trains to the first metro line after the completion of its infrastructure development work.

The meeting also reviewed the French government's funding of the fourth phase of the third metro line in cooperation with the French company RATP.

Arafat, for his part, asserted that the ministry is attaching great importance to increasing rail safety levels, noting that a project to upgrade the rail signalling system over an area of 1089 km is currently under way at a total cost of LE17 billion.

PARIS, July 25, 2018 (News Wires) - French President Emmanuel Macron came under fresh criticism from opposition leaders on Wednesday after appearing to dare opponents to take him on over a scandal surrounding his senior bodyguard and ripping into the media in front of supporters.

Critics say Macron’s office failed to properly punish Alexandre Benalla, the head of his security detail, or refer him promptly to judicial authorities over the incident, which has sparked the biggest political crisis of his tenure.

Footage showed Benalla, who was fired on Friday, hitting a male protester and dragging away a woman while off duty and wearing a riot helmet and police tags.

Appearing at a closed-door event in front of his own lawmakers and ministers on Tuesday, Macron said he alone was responsible for what happened. Macron has not spoken to the media since last week.

“If they want to hold someone responsible, he is standing before you, they can come and get him,” he said, in a video leaked to the media.

Opposition leaders dismissed the comments as bravado.

Far-left lawmaker Alexis Corbiere accused Macron of trying to bully the opposition.

Macron also slammed the media, echoing language that has been used by US President Donald Trump to defend his own actions.

The crisis began when the newspaper Le Monde identified the man beating a protester on a video as Benalla.

“We have a press that is no longer pursuing the truth,” Macron said. “What I see is media power that wants to become judicial power.”

The head of Human Rights Watch in France, Benedicte Jeannerot, tweeted that Macron’s remarks were “dangerous rhetoric while journalists across the world are under attack by populist leaders and autocrats to discredit or stifle any criticism of power”.

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