Thursday 28th of September 2023

macron's free kingdom of the press.....

Journalists from other countries were not allowed to attend the press conference of French President Emmanuel Macron in New Delhi. The Russian Foreign Ministry said that the decision was taken to protect freedom of speech. The French government has not commented on the decision.

The decision was made to protect the freedom of the press, according to the Russian foreign ministry. The issue was raised in a meeting of the Union of Journalists of Russia (UJ) in Moscow. The UJ said the decision to not allow journalists to attend was taken on behalf of the French government.

Chairman of the Union of Journalists of Russia (UJR) Vladimir Solovyov commented in an interview with RT on the message about the non-admission of journalists to Macron's conference.Solovyov called this case "extremely unpleasant."

"There, not only Russian journalists, but also journalists from other countries were not allowed to attend the press conference of French President Emmanuel Macron. Apparently, he is afraid of other people's questions. Apparently the questions were prepared only from their own, and the rest were not ordered to let them in. So journalists from all other countries, except for French journalists, were subjected to such discrimination, "the RT interlocutor added.

According to him, the incident serves as an indicator of freedom of speech and how the current administration of the Elysee Palace treats communication with the press.

Earlier, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that the Russian side is demanding an apology from France for not allowing Russian journalists to attend the press conference of French leader Emmanuel Macron in New Delhi.

According to her, Russian journalist Ekaterina Nadolskaya was not allowed to attend Macron's press conference in New Delhi and even threatened to break her phone.



from the sidelines....

G20 nations have been riven over the Ukraine war since Moscow's invasion last year, with Russian President Vladimir Putin skipping the summit entirely to dodge political opprobrium.

Leaders of the Group of 20, which brings together Russia and Chinaas well as some of Ukraine's most ardent backers, have recently struggled to agree on much, in particular about the 18-month-old invasion.

Facing a major diplomatic embarrassment, host India pressed members to agree a common statement on Saturday that denounced the use of force for territorial gain, but shied away from direct criticism of Russia.

Kyiv said the G20 had "nothing to be proud of" but Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who stood in for Putin at the meeting, on Sunday claimed a diplomatic win.

"We were able to prevent the West's attempts to 'Ukrainize' the summit agenda," the veteran diplomat said, dubbing the two-day gathering a "success".

"The text doesn't mention Russia at all."

On Sunday, Modi formally closed the summit by passing on a ceremonial gavel to Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, whose country will take the bloc's presidency in December.

"We cannot let geopolitical issues sequester the G20 agenda of discussions," Lula said, an implicit reference to wrangling over the Ukraine war.

"We have no interest in a divided G20. We need peace and cooperation instead of conflict."

Indian civil servant Amitabh Kant wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter, that the compromise text on Ukraine had involved "over 200 hours of non-stop negotiations, 300 bilateral meetings (and) 15 drafts".

But despite meeting in what the EU's climate monitor says is likely to be the hottest year in human history, the leaders failed to agree to a phase-out of fossil fuels, despite a UN report a day earlier deeming the drawdown "indispensable" to achieving net-zero emissions.

Instead, they backed a target of tripling global renewable energy capacity by 2030, while committing only to a "phasedown" of coal "in line with national circumstances".

G20 members Russia and Saudi Arabia are major oil exporters, while coal consumption is rising in China and India, already the world's biggest consumers of the dirty fuel.

The climate outcomes were "insufficient", French President Emmanuel Macron said Sunday, saying the world must "phase out coal very rapidly and much more quickly than today".

'People's G20' 

Modi, who painted the summit as India's diplomatic coming of age and is pushing for a permanent seat on the UN Security Council, celebrated the accession of the 55-member African Union to the G20.

As the G20, the grouping included 19 countries and the European Union, representing 85 percent of the world GDP, with South Africa its only member state from the continent.

Modi has sought to position New Delhi as a voice for the Global South and the move turned the grouping into a "people's G20".

He also proposed another G20 leaders' meeting in November by video-link, opening up the possibility of Putin joining -- along with China's Xi Jinping, who skipped the summit with the Asian giants at loggerheads over territorial and other issues.

Lula said Putin would be free to attend next year's event in Rio de Janeiro, despite Brazil being a signatory to the International Criminal Court (ICC), which has issued a warrant for the Russian leader's arrest for war crimes.

"If I'm the president of Brazil and if he comes to Brazil, there's no way that he will be arrested," he told Indian news network Firstpost on Saturday.

Others came together on the summit sidelines, with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan holding face-to-face talks with his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Sunday following a decade-long rift between the two countries.

World leaders had earlier joined Modi to pay their respects to revered Indian independence hero Mahatma Gandhi, taking off their shoes at the site of his cremation, where normal footwear is forbidden as a mark of respect.

Like Modi, many walked barefoot at the rain-dampened site -- including British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Macron -- while others including US President Joe Biden opted for slippers.

After a rendition of a Hindu devotional hymn, they stood for a moment's silence before leaving wreaths at the marble plinth where an eternal flame commemorates Gandhi's memory.




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Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who was representing Russia at the 18th G20 Summit in New Delhi, gave a press conference on Sunday where he weighed in, among other things, on the issue of the push towards dedollarization and trade in local currencies that is gaining momentum on a global scale.

“Everyone understands what the Americans want from Russia... They want to get rid of a competitor,” Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told Sputnik at the G20 Summit in New Delhi.



“The Americans want to strategically defeat us, as they put it. If they had anything new in mind they would like to tell us, they would have,” Lavrov, representing Russia at the two-day international gathering, succinctly stated when asked if he had engaged in any bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the summit with US representatives.


As for one of the central trends in the current increasingly multipolar world – ditching the dollar in mutual trade and payments – Lavrov acknowledged that there is “some progress with respect to dedollarization, including in our bilateral relations with India.”


“Like I said before, our exporters have a lot of, massive amounts of rupees in their accounts in Indian banks, and now we are looking into the possible ways of investing them in a mutually beneficial way. Now, as for actual transactions, we are working as part of the BRICS group and, back in Johannesburg, a decision was made to look into the ways of expanding the use of national currencies in operations,” Sergey Lavrov said.

The historic three-day BRICS Summit 2023 wrapped up on August 24 in the South African city of Johannesburg. The leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, which together constitute the group of major emerging economies named BRICS, stressed the importance of encouraging the use of local currencies in international trade and financial transactions between members of the group as well as their trading partners.

Recalling the decisions hashed out at the recent BRICS Summit, Lavrov continued:


“We looked into the ways of the possibility of creating additional payment platforms, because right now we only have platforms controlled by the West. And now, in fact with China, for example, we have financial operations, 70% or 80% of them are in rubles and in renminbi. And the same goes for India. Now, when the global community sees what's happening with SWIFT, with how the West, with how the United States is using, are using it as their own instrument, they understand that there has to be an alternative.”






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l'empire macron.....


Does Macron want to become Emmanuel I?

French media outlets are making light of a supposed ‘quip’ by the president that could lead to the abolition of the two-term limit

By Matthieu Buge

A (not so) secret meeting

On August 30, a meeting behind closed doors took place between Emmanuel Macron and the heads of opposition parties in Saint-Denis, Paris. It turned out that the doors were not so well closed, and one aspect of the meeting, at which the French presidency itself was discussed, made it to the press.

Nowadays, the French president can serve two five-year terms. The head of the right-wing opposition party National Rally (Rassemblement national) Jordan Bardella suggested it would be a good idea to get back to seven-year presidential terms – as it was before Jacques Chirac clipped them to five years – but with a limit of one term. The president would serve seven years and then go back to civil society. Emmanuel Macron, according to sources cited by AFP, answered that “the limitation on [the number of] terms has been disastrous bulls**t”. It is not a question of the length of the term, then, it’s a question of the limited number of terms.

This limit was implemented by then-President Nicolas Sarkozy in 2008 for some obscure reason – did he want to curb his own ambitions, did “Sarko l’Américain” want to make France look more like the US? No one really knows. But the current French president seems to think it was a mistake and that he should be reelected as many times as he can.

Centrist François Bayrou, a politician close to Macron who was also present at the St Denis meeting, said he didn’t hear the president say those words, and that “there were smiles.” He makes it look like Macron’s words (if they were indeed uttered) were just a quip. It might be so. The current French president is a born provocateur. However, the former president of the National Assembly Richard Ferrand, who belongs to Macron’s political party, said the same thing in June. Coincidence? Certainly not. Emmanuel Macron, the youngest French president ever, is making a move. What are his options?

In 2027 he has to step down, according to the Constitution. But, unlike in the US, France allows a former president who has already served two terms to come back later on. A constitutional reform would allow Macron to be candidate for reelection in 2027. Otherwise, he will have to wait until 2032, and the five-year span could be politically fatal for him if the next president proves to be more popular – something not really difficult to achieve.

Nothing personal, just business? 

Macron is young. In 2027, he will be only 49. As François Bayrou said, “Macron will remain a French and European democratic leader.” Here, one needs to consider the French political spectrum. Who are Macron’s potential opponents? There are not many, even if Macron is largely unpopular. His former Prime Minister Edouard Philippe could be. But the current Minister of Internal Affairs, Gérald Darmanin, a very ambitious man, has already started to position himself as the next president. He is part of Macron’s team. He is backed by Nicolas Sarkozy. And he actually uses Sarkozy’s strategy, when the latter was elected in 2007 while he was in charge of the same ministry.

For Macron, the best option would be to have Marine Le Pen of the National Rally getting elected in 2027. She would be absolutely unable to rule the country. Not only because she is incompetent. The administration, the judicial authorities, the educational system, all the structures of the state, which are usually left-wing oriented, loathe her. They would effectively refuse to comply. It would be a total mess. And, consequently, it would mean a certain comeback for Macron in 2032 – or even earlier. And if, in the meantime, the constitutional reform took place, he would come back with no term limitations.

But is it really just a question of personal ambition? Yes, as with many politicians, Macron has a streak of egotistical psychopathy – but he is also one of the best soldiers of the Western system. Is private Macron still needed? He did his best during the Covid-19 crisis (he will be remembered as the one who wanted to “piss off the unvaccinated”), he is engaged full-time in the Ukraine conflict, and he takes in migrants by the million, disseminating them through the countryside. No French politician is so well-connected with financial international circles and Western supranational elites.

He is the good French soldier of the system. He needs to stay. As the head of France, or… as the head of the EU after Ursula von der Leyen? As Bayrou said, “Macron will remain a French and European democratic leader.”

Media let the cat out of the bag

This apparent “leak” in the media is a test. What the press prints or remains silent about is never a matter of chance or coincidence. Journalists are here to prepare the ground for political maneuvers. How would the French population welcome such a reform? Is a referendum needed? A referendum would be a disaster for Macron as his ratings are catastrophic. The script needs to be well written. This is where establishment media journalists’ hypocrisy reaches its climax.

They first get in line with Macron’s words, recalling that in 2008, constitutional experts said that Sarkozy’s reforms were indeed a mistake. Here is their historical argument. Then they take out the philosophical violins to play music, a tune which sounds right only if you forget that they have been trashing long-lasting political leaders in “adversarial” nations such as Putin, Xi, Gaddafi, Assad, etc.: “There may be an exceptional man or woman, or exceptional circumstances, such as a war, which would make one want to keep a president for more than ten years,” as one can read on RMC. They suddenly remind the public that “one can rule a country for a long period of time without being a dictator.”

At a time when France is being kicked out of Africa, maybe African journalists are the ones who write best about Macron’s “quip.” As they noticed, Macron’s words were uttered while the coup in Gabon was in part due to the third term of Macron-backed Ali Bongo, whereas Macron was opposed to Alpha Condé’s third term in Guinea. It speaks for itself when it comes to Macron’s psychology and cynicism.








The Russian Foreign Ministry summoned the French ambassador to Moscow, Pierre Levy, on Monday over the treatment of Russian journalists at President Emmanuel Macron’s press conference at the G20 summit more than a week ago.

RIA Novosti correspondents and an editor-in-chief at the ‘Russia-News’ media outlet were denied access to the event in a “brutal manner,” the ministry said in a statement, calling the actions of the French authorities “discriminatory and openly Russophobic.”

Such actions “blatantly violate the principle of press freedom,” the statement said, adding that the fact that the French authorities refused to apologize for the incident and sought to seize the Russian journalists’ phones instead shows France’s “determination to enforce a segregation regime against the Russian media.”


Persecuting Russian journalists is nothing but one of the many efforts by French authorities to stifle any dissent, the ministry said. Through the French ambassador, Moscow has demanded Paris stop exerting pressure on any undesirable media. France should also stop discriminating against Russian media outlets and start treating them in the same open way Russia treats the French ones, it added.


The incident took place during a G20 summit held on September 9 and 10 in New Delhi, India. The Russian Foreign Ministry’s spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, branded the actions of the French authorities a “wild manifestation of Nazism.”

The EU banned all Russian ‘state media’ – from RT and Sputnik to public broadcaster VGTRK – and persuaded YouTube to enforce that ban globally when the conflict between Russia and Ukraine began.

However, Macron had an arguably thorny relationship with the Russian media long before the current conflict, as Macron’s campaign refused to accredit reporters from RT and Sputnik back in 2017. Since then, RT crews have received an array of bizarre explanations meant to justify barring them from attending government events. In January 2018, for instance, RT France was blocked from covering Macron’s visit to Rome.

In October 2023, a French government spokesman acknowledged that the Elysee Palace intentionally barred the Russian media outlets from covering its events, as it considered them to be not “media, but propaganda.”