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Emmanuel Macron appointed Jean Castex as Prime Minister, replacing Edouard Philippe, and charged him with forming a new government, the Elysée announced on Friday.

Former collaborator of Nicolas Sarkozy, Jean Castex, 55, mayor LR of Prades (Eastern Pyrenees), is since April the interministerial delegate in charge of deconfinement.

“He is a complete and versatile senior official who will be keen to reform the state and conduct a peaceful dialogue with the territories,” said the Elysee.

“He is the man for the job” because, “known for working through dialogue and in a spirit of unity”, he “will be able to implement the reconstructions mentioned by the Head of State in his last expressions in the context of the new path “of the quinquennium.

The presidency presents Jean Castex as “the man of successful deconfinement” who “is called at a critical moment in the health crisis”.

His appointment “is a Macronian choice, consistent with the spirit of surpassing carried by the president for three years”, underlines the same source. This man, who “worked with Xavier Bertrand, Nicolas Sarkozy and Edouard Philippe”, “comes from the right but he is a social Gaullist”.

He is “perfectly versed in the mysteries of Paris and an expert on local and territorial realities”, “which combines experience of high civil service – he is a member of the Court of Accounts – and local mandates: both mayor, president of a community of municipalities and departmental advisor “, according to the Elysée. “Paris and Prades is an important contrast in the period of plural reconstruction which is opening”.

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Brussels sparks stand-off with Britain by launching power grab over running of Channel Tunnel

BRUSSELS has sparked a stand-off with Britain by launching a power grab over the running of the Channel Tunnel.

Eurocrats are demanding the continental rail link stays under EU law and the permanent oversight of euro judges after Brexit.

2Brussels wants the Channel Tunnel to stay under EU law after BrexitCredit: AFP

A negotiating paper seen by The Sun reveals they want control of "the whole infrastructure including in its section under the jurisdiction of the UK".

No10 is resisting the move, which could have implications in the event of accidents or legal disputes.

A senior UK source said any role for the European Court of Justice after Brexit is a "non-starter".

The running of the Chunnel for areas like safety standards and driver qualifications is currently governed by a 1986 Anglo-French treaty.


But when we leave the bloc at the end of the year the agreement will become legally null and void.

Without a replacement the British and French stretches would be under different regimes, risking chaos and even the halting of services.

In such a scenario train drivers would need two separate sets of qualifications to work on the route.

Brussels has authorised Paris to negotiate a new treaty with the UK under strict conditions that would replicate the status quo.

In its paper the Commission says Britain must accept being "bound" by ECJ decisions for disputes covering EU rules.

The Sun says

BRITISH and French firms jointly financed and dug the Channel Tunnel, meeting under the seabed roughly halfway.

We bored from our side, they bored from theirs.

Now Brussels bores everyone with another pointless power grab.

Why would a newly independent nation like Britain surrender control of our Chunnel stretch to EU courts?

Is there nothing they won’t try on in these tortuous negotiations?

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It states: "The agreement must be compatible with Union law in all respects."

France would also have powers to take "unilateral action" to ensure compliance with EU standards on its stretch of the route.

A Department for Transport spokesman said: "We are absolutely clear any bilateral arrangements will fully respect the UK's status as an independent, sovereign nation."

2A UK source says any role for the European Court of Justice after Brexit is a 'non-starter'Credit: EPA Brexit deal might not be possible but UK still working to get one, says chief negotiator

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