France's new president moves quickly on first full day in office
16 May 2017, 09:37 | Virginia Benson
Merkel's government has been grateful for Macron's support for her open-armed approach to refugees, which Macron said "rescued Europe's honor" - rare clear backing on that front from a senior European official. Find us on Facebook too!
In a sign that she was prepared to discuss far-reaching changes to.
A large group of onlookers, some carrying European flags, stood outside the chancellery as Macron arrived.
A German diplomat told Reuters Germany must decide whether it wants to continue its single-minded focus on budget rigour or work with Macron on joint ideas for Europe's future.
The 39-year-old centrist leader and former investment banker laid out his ambitious plans for France as he took power on Sunday, promising to restore France's shattered self-confidence and help rebuild the flagging European Union. Philippe's age reinforces the generational shift in France's corridors of power and the image of youthful vigor that Macron is cultivating. He is a member of the Republicans, a mainstream-right party whose candidate Macron beat in the first round of the election.
Philippe, 46, a parliamentarian and mayor of the northern port city of Le Havre since 2010, began his career at the State Council in 1997.
Macron is seeking to attract members from both the right and left to his new political party, La République en Marche (Republic on the Move), in time for next month's parliamentary elections.
After campaigning for Socialist then-prime minister Michel Rocard as a youth, Phillipe switched to the right, becoming a close ally of centre-right former prime minister Alain Juppe.
The choice of Philippe is aimed at drawing more defectors from The Republicans, in the same way as Macron's decision not to put up an REM candidate in Manuel Valls' constituency pulls the Socialist former prime minister closer, and makes it hard for a divided left to re-unite.
Breathing new life into the European Union is just one of a host of challenges Macron faces.
Elysee secretary-general Alexis Kohler made the announcement on the steps of the presidential palace. Defeated by a Macron landslide, she denounced what she predicted would be a continuation of old policies, including "austerity, submission to Brussels, massive immigration".
He said that if the right fails to win the elections in June, "the country will not understand that we engage in a systematic opposition". Voters go to the polls again in June to elect the 577 lawmakers in the National Assembly.
"The old world is back", said radical left leader Jean-Luc Melenchon, adding: "Emmanuel Macron has taken control of the whole political class".
"I was among the first to say "why not a prime minister from the right"?"
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