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Elisabeth Borne: French prime minister resigns as Emmanuel Macron prepares reshuffle | World News


France’s prime minister Elisabeth Borne has resigned after two years in the role.

Her resignation comes ahead of an expected reshuffle by French President Emmanuel Macron.

Mr Macron faces a tough fight in the European Parliament vote later this year, in which Eurosceptic candidates are expected to make gains in France.

He has also faced recent turbulence with domestic policy, including large-scale protests over pension reforms last year.

His government recently scraped through new immigration legislation which will strengthen their ability to deport migrants.

But it only passed after his centrist alliance was able to strike a deal with the conservative Republican Party.

The tough negotiations and heated parliament debate had led to questions over the ability of the government to pass future major bills.

Ms Borne’s resignation has been billed in French media as an attempt by centrist Mr Macron to breathe new life into his top table and head off political rivals, including far-right candidate Marine Le Pen.

In her resignation letter, Ms Borne suggested she had resigned at Mr Macron’s request, citing the president’s “will” to “appoint a new prime minister”.

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Mr Macron on Monday accepted the resignation of Ms Borne – France’s second female prime minister.

The statement from Mr Macron’s office said Ms Borne would continue handling daily domestic issues until a new prime minister was appointed.

French media have suggested the education minister, Gabriel Attal, as the most likely to replace her.

The president posted on X, formerly Twitter, that Ms Borne’s work had “been exemplary every day”.

“You have implemented our project with stateswomen’s courage, commitment and determination. Thank you from the bottom of my heart,” Mr Macron wrote.

Under the French political system, the prime minister is appointed by the president and accountable to the parliament.

It is a crucial role, as the prime minister is in charge of implementing domestic policy and coordinating the government’s team of ministers.

Ms Borne was appointed to the role in May 2022 after Mr Macron’s re-election for a second term.

However, Macron’s centrists lost their majority in parliament a month later and his government has been forced into utilising special constitutional powers, along with some political manoeuvring, to pass laws.

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