The former number two at the Finance Ministry, Francois Baroin, has taken over from his previous boss, Christine Lagarde.
While cannabis use has remained fairly stable in France, the number of cocaine and tobacco users is on the rise.
This weekend is set to be a busy one on the roads, trains and at airports as the French holiday season gets underway.
A man who leapt into the path of female joggers to 'warn them' about possible danger has been caught by police.
Fenugreek seeds exported from Egypt to France and Germany may have caused an E. coli outbreak that has killed 48 people in Europe, the European Food Safety Authority said on Wednesday.
France has defended its decision to supply arms to Libyan rebels, arguing that it is not in breach of a Security Council resolution that established an arms embargo to Libya.
Two French television journalists were flying home on Thursday from Afghanistan after spending 18 months as Taliban prisoners and becoming the longest held Western hostages in the war-torn nation.