Retreats, Israel, drought, Putin… The month of March in drawings

In March, the news was marked in France by the pension reform and its protest, while the country experienced an unprecedented drought at this time of the year

Retreats, Israel, drought, Putin… The month of March in drawings

In March, the news was marked in France by the pension reform and its protest, while the country experienced an unprecedented drought at this time of the year. In Israel, it was a justice reform project that ignited the powder, and Vladimir Putin was the subject of an arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court for the war crime of "illegal deportation". of Ukrainian children. In 15 drawings, "La Matinale" offers you an overview of the highlights of the past month.

Movement against pension reform

The sixth day of mobilization against the pension reform, Tuesday March 7, was the largest since the start of the social conflict on January 19: 1.28 million people marched in France, according to the Ministry of the Interior, and 3.5 million according to the CGT. In transport, traffic was very disrupted while in schools, about a third of teachers went on strike.

The use of 49.3 by the government on Thursday, March 16, to pass the pension reform has fueled the protest, with rallies certainly less massive but marked by greater violence, resulting in injuries among the demonstrators but also on the side law enforcement. The unions have called for an eleventh day of mobilization for Thursday, April 6.

Postponement of Charles III's visit to France

The state visit of King Charles III to France, scheduled for March 26 to 29, has been postponed due to the strike and mobilization day on Tuesday March 28 and the social climate linked to the pension reform. This trip was to be Charles III's first trip abroad since he succeeded Elizabeth II on September 8, 2022. It was finally in Germany, where he was also expected from March 29 to 31, that the sovereign , accompanied by his wife Camilla, made his first official visit abroad.

In Israel, a reform project that also divides

The justice reform project of Binyamin Netanyahu's government aims to increase the power of elected officials over that of judges by allowing Parliament to overturn decisions of the Supreme Court. A rebalancing according to the government, a risk of authoritarian drift for its detractors. This project provoked one of the largest popular mobilization movements in the country. Faced with this challenge and the start of a general strike, the Israeli Prime Minister announced on Monday, March 27, a "pause" in the examination of the text, until the next parliamentary session in April.

Inflation gallops

In France, inflation rose to 6.2% in February over one year, against 6% in January, INSEE announced in early March. Worse, food labels swelled by 14.5% over this period. The Minister of the Economy, Bruno Le Maire, announced on Monday March 6 the launch of an "anti-inflation quarter", i.e. "the lowest possible price level" on a selection of "hundreds" of products in large retail chains.

Arrest warrant for Vladimir Putin

The International Criminal Court on Friday (March 17) issued an arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin for the war crime of "illegal deportation" of Ukrainian children. Maria Lvova-Belova, its commissioner for children's rights, is also under an arrest warrant for similar reasons. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky hailed a "historic decision, which marks the beginning of historic responsibility". For its part, the Kremlin ruled that the decision had no legal value. More than 16,000 Ukrainian children have been deported to Russia since the invasion of Ukraine, according to kyiv.

In France, an unprecedented drought

The Minister for Ecological Transition, Christophe Béchu, called on the prefects at the end of February to issue water restriction orders "from now on" to anticipate possible crisis situations during the summer. In a context of unprecedented winter drought in France, the minister said he was "alarmed" by the lack of water in the soil. Thursday, March 30, Emmanuel Macron presented around fifty measures to improve water management, including a sobriety plan in all sectors and the reuse of wastewater.

TikTok in the dock

A few weeks after the episode of the Chinese balloon, it is the turn of TikTok, the Chinese microvideo platform, to be suspected of espionage as well as data theft. Since mid-March, the staff and elected representatives of the European Parliament and the European Commission no longer have the right to use the application on their professional devices. In the United States, a law ratified in January already prohibited it for federal state officials. In France, the government on Friday March 24 banned the installation and use of "recreational" applications, such as TikTok or Netflix, on the work phones of 2.5 million state civil servants.

The setbacks of Credit Suisse

After a weekend of negotiations, the largest Swiss bank, UBS, agreed on Sunday March 19 to buy out its rival, Credit Suisse, which had been battered on the stock market in the previous days, thus pushing back the specter of a bankruptcy which would have caused a wave of shock across the entire global financial sector. The transaction amounted to 3 billion Swiss francs (3.02 billion euros) payable in UBS shares, or only 76 cents for a Credit Suisse share which was still worth 1.86 Swiss francs on Friday evening March 17.

In the United States, another massacre in a school

A shooting at an elementary school in Nashville, Tennessee, killed three 9-year-olds and three adults, including the principal, Monday, March 27. Arriving quickly on the scene, the police shot dead the assailant, a 28-year-old transgender person, before discovering a plan of the school and a manifesto at his home, indicating that the carnage was premeditated. Calling the killing "disgusting", US President Joe Biden called again on Congress to ban assault rifles, as a proposed law to that effect is blocked by opposition lawmakers.

Middle school and high school girls targeted in Iran

In Iran, poisonings have been reported in several hundred schools for girls, with girls complaining of breathing difficulties, nausea and headaches. Some Iranians see the gas poisonings as "revenge" by the regime, in reaction to the youth uprising after the death of Mahsa Amini on September 16, 2022, following a vice squad check.

Xi Jinping, Supreme Leader

Friday, March 10, none of the 2,952 delegates of the National People's Congress of China dared to oppose or even abstain when designating the President of the Republic. Xi Jinping was unanimously elected for a third five-year term. With this historic reappointment, Xi Jinping becomes the country's most powerful leader for generations.

Detente between Iran and Saudi Arabia

Tehran and Riyadh announced on Friday, March 10 after talks in China, the restoration of their diplomatic relations, severed in 2016. The two countries have pledged to reopen their diplomatic representations within two months. The normalization agreement between these two heavyweights in the Middle East confirms the rise of Beijing in the region, against a backdrop of American disengagement.

Fresh water alert

At an exceptional conference devoted to water, from March 22 to 24 in New York, the United Nations warned of the "imminent" risk of a global freshwater crisis. "Vampiric" humanity has "broken the water cycle", endangering billions of people across the planet, denounced Antonio Guterres, the UN secretary general.