The Latest: France's Macron: Stop battering press freedoms


The Latest on French President Emmanuel Macron's agenda (all times local):

7:45 p.m.

French President Emmanuel Macron says press freedom is increasingly battered in some democracies, including in Europe.

In a speech to journalists Wednesday, Macron made a reference to Hungary and Poland and their recent crackdown on media freedom.

He also mentioned Turkey and Russia as countries that should "fulfill their commitments" as signatories to the European Convention of Human Rights.

The French leader said "press freedom is not only attacked by dictatorships, it is also battered in countries that are democracies."

Macron will meet Friday with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Paris.

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6:45 p.m.

French President Emmanuel Macron says he's going to propose a new law to combat fake news on the internet during French election campaigns.

In a speech Wednesday, Macron said he wants new rules for websites, including more transparency about their sponsored content. Under the new law, Macron said websites would have to say who is financing them and the amount of money for sponsored content would be capped.

He says in case of fake news, an emergency legal action could allow authorities to suppress that content or even close the website.

Macron says press freedom wouldn't be threatened by this bill since it would only apply during campaigns.

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3 p.m.

French President Emmanuel Macron has urged his ministers to rapidly push on with measures to reform the country's economy, security apparatus and immigration framework.

Following the first meeting of Macron's cabinet this year, Prime Minister Edouard Philippe says Wednesday that the government has "a lot on our plate."

Top of the agenda in the first half of the year is a bill to address France's high unemployment through better training of jobless workers and sanctions.

Macron's government is also planning a strategic review of the French military, a bill to get a better handle on what's going on with immigration into the country and measures to combat violence against women.

Macron is set to give a speech later in the day.


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