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France's new government announced
20 May 2017, 02:03 | Darnell Patrick
France's new government announced
The 69-year-old from northwest Brittany, who backed former cabinet colleague Macron for president, is one of only two ministers to be kept on - a reward for his support which helped paper over Macron's lack of worldwide experience.
CORRECTS AGE TO 52 Newly named French defense minister, Sylvie Goulard, 52, right, waves during an handover ceremony with her predecessor, Jean-Yves Le Drian, in Paris, France, Wednesday May, 17, 2017. In the event, some 22 were named, half women, half men and including figures from civil society.
They are also strategic, with Mr. Macron, a former Socialist Economy Minister, reaching out to the moderate right of the Les Republicains (LR) party in order to get their support in the National Assembly, which will be reconstituted in June following elections.
She will take over from veteran Socialist Jean-Yves Le Drian who will move over to foreign affairs, while rightwinger Bruno Le Maire was appointed economy minister.
High-profile conservative Bruno Le Maire was the pick for the Finance Ministry.
Macron however will hope that his government, that includes 11 members of civic society will help persuade French voters to back REM in the parliamentary elections and ensure that he doesn't have to announce a new government all over again. He was one of the first to support Macron when he left the government and launched his own political movement En Marche!
No sooner was Macron elected on May 7 than Le Maire was offering his services. In 2012 some of François Hollande's ministers decided not to stand in the elections to keep their roles safe.
German chancellor Angela Merkel (R) and French president Emmanuel Macron (L) attend a joint press conference at the German Chancellory in Berlin, Germany, 15 May 2017. He has since 2001 been major of Lyon - France's third biggest city.
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In the list appeared Sylvie Goulard, a centrist European Union lawmaker, in charge of defense affairs, Agnes Buzyn, solidarity and health minister and Muriel Penicaud, a minister in charge of employment issue. He remains one of the longest-running mayors in France, but has never held a top government post.
He supervised French military operations in Mali, Central African Republic, Iraq and Syria.
The armed forces will now be led by Sylvie Goulard, 59, the most senior woman in the government.
"This shows Europe is the priority", a French diplomatic source said.
A European lawmaker who speaks four languages, Goulard is respected in Brussels as a straight talker, having acted as adviser to former European Commission president Romano Prodi.
Posting on Twitter a picture of the pair in a gilded room of the Elysee presidential palace, Macron called Philippe "the prime minister of a government of unity and renewal to change France".
Mr Macron wants European militaries to join efforts and for eurozone countries to share a budget and tax rules.
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