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Amid economic woes, France festive for Bastille

Saturday, July 14, 2012 - 00:48

July 14 - France celebrates Bastille Day, presided over for the first time by President Francois Hollande, as the military faces cuts. Rough Cut (no reporter narration)

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(ROUGH CUT -- NO REPORTER NARRATION) Thousands of troops paraded down the Champs Elysees while planes and helicopters flew overhead as France's new Socialist President Francois Hollande led celebrations for Bastille day on Saturday facing the first tests of his leadership. For Hollande, who took office in mid-May, the celebration of France's national day was overshadowed by outcry surrounding the announcement of mass layoffs at carmaker Peugeot last week and a scandal over his private life which threatens to undermine his image as a "normal" president. Hollande was expected to discuss in a television interview at 1:30 p.m. (1130 GMT) simmering tensions between his partner, journalist Valerie Trierweiler, and his four children and their mother, fellow Socialist politician Segolene Royal. The annual parade came as France's military is facing cutbacks as the country struggles to pare back one of the highest levels of public spending in Western Europe to meet an EU deficit target of 3 percent of GDP next year.

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Amid economic woes, France festive for Bastille

Saturday, July 14, 2012 - 00:48