This week, we’re talking about volts, trains and the Pope. And, if you want to challenge yourself, all the links to the original French versions are attached.
Almost two weeks after its indiscretions with actress Julie Gayet were revealed by a tabloid, François Hollande announced by a simple call to the Agence France Press that he was leaving Valerie Treirweiller, his longtime companion. Don’t expect the end of the drama yet. The French press already notes that the break-up was not announced by both exes, but only by the French President.
Francois Hollande visited the Pope at the Vatican, and subsequently a bomb exploded in Rome by a French church last night. Did you first wonder if anyone was hurt? Then you are not French Interior Minister Manuel Valls, whose first move was to dismiss the idea that the bomb was connected to Hollande’s visit. The bomb damaged three parked cars and a window of the church in the historic street, but it appears that no one was injured. Police are still investigating the culprit and motive.
France’s National Assembly voted Thursday to limit electromagnetic waves. Opponents said that the law would unfairly target areas where fewer people lived. The law limits electromagnetic waves to 0.6 volts per meter, down from an average of 1 volt per meter, though, in some places, levels can reach 6 volts per meter. According to Le Monde, there’s not scientific agreement on the health dangers of electromagnetic waves, but several high-profile studies have urged caution with them.
A train on the Parisian regional subway line, the RER-B, was evacuated on Friday, because a passenger had left a bottle of cyanide on the train. The passenger returned to the train station and said that the cyanide wasn’t going to be used as a poison, of course, but to treat gold because the passenger was a metallurgist. No word on whether the passenger ever retrieved his or her cyanide.
Philippe El Shennawy emerged from prison after serving a 38-year sentence. Formerly one of the longest-serving inmates in the French prison system, El Shennawy was sentenced to life in prison after robbing a bank and taking hostages. Now 59, he will have to wear an ankle monitor for two years. So what’s next for El Shennawy? Ostensibly he’ll spend time with his wife and child, and he’ll be working as a head of a cultural events project. He received a Master’s degree in History of the Middle Ages while in prison.