France's Macron holds 1st Cabinet meeting; half are women

AP , Thursday 18 May 2017

French President Emmanuel Macron (2ndR) sits across from Prime Minister Edouard Philippe (2ndL) while attending the first cabinet meeting with newly-appointed ministers at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, May 18, 2017. (REUTERS)

French President Emmanuel Macron has gathered his newly-named government for his first Cabinet meeting — an assembly that looks significantly different than its predecessors.

The government, appointed on Wednesday, is a mix of 22 prominent and unknown figures from the left and the right, half of them women.

They arrived smiling Thursday, briefly posing for photographs on the front porch of the presidential Elysee Palace in Paris.

The most senior Cabinet job, interior minister, went to Gerard Collomb, 69, long-time Socialist mayor of Lyon who played a key role in Macron's presidential bid.

Jean-Yves Le Drian, 69, former defense minister under former President Francois Hollande, stays on in Macron's government as foreign minister and Europe minister.

The armed forces are now led by centrist, pro-European Sylvie Goulard, 52.

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