Politicians told to set example with thrifty breaks at home
The French president has urged his ministers to stay in the country for their holidays to set an example to compatriots feeling the economic pinch.
Francois Hollande reminded his cabinet that it had signed a "morality code" to "refuse all luxury breaks offered by foreign governments", and told ministers to remain "reachable and available" at all times, particularly in view of the euro crisis.
The president, who once declared "I don't like the rich", wants to avoid the type of controversies that plagued the cabinet of his predecessor, Nicolas Sarkozy.
The worst faux pas came from Michele Alliot-Marie, Mr Sarkozy's foreign minister, who took a hospitality jet while on holiday in Tunisia.
Mr Sarkozy shocked voters by borrowing the jet and yacht of billionaire friend Vincent Bollore days after his election, leaving a "bling" stain on his presidency.
Mr Hollande will, in contrast, take two small breaks totalling just four days at the 11th-century presidential retreat of Fort de Bregancon on the French Riviera. (© Daily Telegraph, London)