New museums, stolen sand and a Twin Festival. We’re looking at the past week’s news from France, from serious to silly.
American tech giants shouted in unison on Monday to show their joint dissatisfaction over plans to add a 3% tax to total annual revenues of the largest technology companies. The leaders of Facebook, Amazon, Apple and Google (all US-based companies) claim that the tax is discriminatory, and Amazon’s Director of Tax Planning claims that Amazon “cannot absorb the expenses.” Donald Trump had previously retaliated by proposing harsher taxes on imported French wine.
President Macron has been taking steps to convince Vladimir Putin to enter into a dialogue with the Ukraine ahead of the G7 summit later this week. Macron has been keen to broker peace between Russia and the Ukraine, and there are hopes that the new President of the Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky may motivate talks.
Two French tourists are facing six years in jail after they allegedly stole around 40kg of sand from a Sardinian beach. The pair had stashed it in 14 plastic bottles in their vehicle and were scuppered at border control as they attempted to board their ferry to Toulon. They claim to have taken the sand as a souvenir of their trip, and say they did not know that taking sand, stones or shells from beaches in Sardinia is expressly forbidden.
A new museum has opened in Paris in a basement which was once the headquarters of the French Resistance. On the 75th anniversary of French liberation from Germany forces the Musée de la Libération de Paris – Musée du Général Leclerc – Musée Jean Moulin opened its doors for the first time. The museum is named after Jean Moulin, one of the key figures of the French Resistance, and one of the heroes of World War II.
Residents of Pleucadeuc were seeing double at their annual Twin Festival. Now in its 25th year the gathering is held each summer to bring together twins from around the world.
Sport and Showbiz
The Scottish rugby team were trounced by France in their warm-up match in Nice last week. The French side got five tries past the Scots and will aim to do the same this weekend when the teams meet again. These matches are part of the run up to the Rugby World Cup which kicks off in September.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have arrived in France for their summer holiday with their son in tow. The couple, also known as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, have been seen in the French Riviera with their son Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor. This is their first August vacation as a family and precedes their first royal tour as a threesome this Autumn, where they are scheduled to travel South Africa and Botswana.