The strikes roiling France right now are about government plans to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62 and the pension age, which determines when people can begin accessing their pension funds, from 65 to 67. The French government says it can no longer afford the earlier retirement and pension ages. France is not the only country facing a budget crunch partially because of its generous pension system, coupled with an aging population and a struggling economy. Across Europe, home to many of the world's most generous national pension systems, countries are struggling to afford this staple of the welfare state. Here are five examples.
The leaders of France, Germany, and Russia will meet this week in Deauville, France, as a first step toward fostering closer ties.
For a week, French union workers have been protesting government plans to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62 and the full state pension age from 65 to 67. Headlines Monday warned of fuel shortages and gas prices have jumped in response – but the gas pumps are not the only place where the French are feeling the impact of the strikes.
CNN cites an unnamed NATO official who charges that members of Pakistan's intelligence service are giving shelter to Osama bin Laden in the country's northwest.
Milan, Rome, and Naples have recently dismantled Roma Gypsy camps, but Italy may avoid EU sanctions since the expulsions are being carried out at the municipal level.
French strikes against pension reforms continued today. A large protest is expected this weekend as unions and the French Left continue to take on President Nicolas Sarkozy.
Iceland is No. 1 and Yemen is ranked last in the World Economic Forum's 2010 Global Gender Gap Index, which measures gender equality.
Many Muslims in France feel increasingly targeted amid growing terror concerns and what some see as anti-Muslim measures, such as the banning burqas in public.
Louis Caprioli, the former head of France’s domestic intelligence agency, says the raft of travel warnings suggests that 'something real is afoot.'
France warned its citizens traveling to Britain to be especially vigilant, saying a terrorist attack on public transport or tourist sites is 'highly likely.'
Faisal Shahzad, the would-be Times Square bomber, was sentenced today as French police arrested alleged militants. Policing and intelligence-sharing has improved dramatically since 9/11.
France arrested 12 suspects in three cities. Western governments are focusing on 'homegrown' terrorism amid concerns that Al Qaeda is tapping sympathizers with citizenship in Western countries.
Reports of a possible Al Qaeda terror plot in Europe that would involve Mumbai-style strikes in Britain, France, and Germany come as France is on alert for unrelated threats.
The Al Qaeda plot was reportedly a coordinated Mumbai-style attack on major cities in Britain, France, Germany, and possibly the United States.
French unions rallied again in protest of President Sarkozy's proposal to increase the minimum retirement age to 62.
After launching a controversial Gypsy crackdown, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said Germany was quietly planning to follow suit. Germany denies it has any such plans.
France may face fines or disciplinary action from the European Union for its Roma roundups. EU officials likened the policy to Nazi-era tactics.
Spain's Basque separatist ETA offered a ceasefire, but the Spanish government dismissed the offer, demanding the group lay down its arms as a precondition for peace talks.
In France, a movement from within the Gypsy community could temper what have been bad relations with European governments amid a hot immigration debate.
A conversation published this weekend by Belgian media provides a rare glimpse into a transaction between church officials and victims involved in Catholic sex abuse scandals.
Gypsies deemed to be illegally in France boarded planes for Romania today. Since late July, authorities have been shutting down gypsy camps and rounding up illegals in a high-profile initiative.
France on Tuesday rejected a petition calling for it to pay $17 billion to help with Haiti earthquake reconstruction as a way to make amends for fees charged Haiti by the French crown 200 years ago.
The traditional life of Gypsies in France is under assault amid a law-and-order push and pressure to stop traveling.
The Afghanistan war has not been popular in Paris, Berlin, or London. But neither the Dutch withdrawal nor WikiLeaks revelations appears to be a threshold issue for voters.
Ruling party officials say new measures are needed to counter increasing security threats, but critics say France's President Nicolas Sarkozy is trying to change the subject from a series of scandals that have rocked his presidency.