French President Emmanuel Macron attends Queen’s funeral in London

Alongside leaders from across the world, France's president Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte, attended the Queen's State funeral on Monday.

French President Emmanuel Macron attends Queen's funeral in London
French President Emmanuel Macron (R) and First Lady Brigitte Macron (L) pay their respects to the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, Lying in State inside Westminster Hall, at the Palace of Westminster in London on September 18, 2022. (Photo by JOHN SIBLEY / POOL / AFP)

French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte paid their respects to Queen Elisabeth II in London, along with several other foreign leaders, such as American president Joe Biden and president of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen.

The couple arrived on Sunday, September 18th, the eve of the funeral.

(Photo by Marco BERTORELLO / AFP)

The image above shows the French presidential couple arriving at Westminster Abbey in London on September 19, 2022, for the State Funeral Service for Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II, the country’s longest-serving monarch. 

(Photo by Gareth Fuller / POOL / AFP)

In this photo, the Macrons can be seen entering Westminster Abbey, alongside other foreign leaders ahead of the state funeral on Monday morning. 

(Photo by Dominic Lipinski / POOL / AFP)

In the photo above, US President Joe Biden (R) can be seen taking his seat with wife Jill Biden. French President Emmanuel Macron sits among the crowd of dignitaries and leaders on the left, during the State Funeral of Queen Elizabeth II on Monday. 

The Twitter account “Royal Family Channel” posted a video of the two paying their respects to the late Queen as she lay-in-state on Sunday. 

(Photo by Heiko Junge / NTB / AFP / Norway OUT)

Prior to the services, Macron waved as he and Brigitte walked “incognito” along a bridge with the Palace of Westminster in the background in London on September 18, 2022, on the eve of the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II. 

Macron was criticised by some British media for sporting sunglasses and sneakers, as he and Brigitte walked past the queue of British waiting to see the royal coffin.

In France, many Internet users and political figures, including those on far-right, accused the French presidential couple of disrespecting the British by “going to Queen’s funeral in sneakers.”

The images were taken on Sunday, prior to the service.

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Macron calls for stricter Twitter controls on Covid disinformation

French President Emmanuel Macron criticised Twitter's new boss Elon Musk on Thursday, saying the entrepreneur was wrong to drop the fight against Covid disinformation as he slashes back content moderation on the platform.

Macron calls for stricter Twitter controls on Covid disinformation

With his country facing a fresh surge in coronavirus infections, Macron said the subject of misleading Covid information should be addressed head on, not swept under the rug.

“I think this is a big issue,” Macron, on a state visit to the United States, told broadcaster ABC. “What I push very much, for one, is exactly the opposite: more regulation.”

He said such protections have been implemented and enforced in France and “at the European level.”

Freedom of expression remains paramount, Macron insisted, “but there is responsibilities and limits” to what can be written and disseminated.

“You cannot go into the streets and have a racist speech or anti-Semitic speech,” the French leader said. “You cannot put at risk the life of somebody else. Violence is never legitimate in democracy.”

Macron’s concept of freedom of expression within acceptable limits is far from the libertarian approach of Musk, a self-described “free speech absolutist” who has sacked many of the Twitter employees tasked with content moderation.

Musk has begun to allow Twitter users banned from the platform for posting disinformation, such as former US president Donald Trump, to return.

And it emerged this week that Twitter has stopped enforcing a rule preventing users from sharing misleading information about Covid-19 and vaccine effectiveness.

The billionaire Musk has made no secret of his fierce opposition to health restrictions put in place to fight the pandemic, especially when they meant the temporary shuttering of his Tesla electric vehicle factory in California.

“To say that they can not leave their house and they will be arrested if they do… this is fascist. This is not democratic, this is not freedom,” Musk raged in April 2020 on a conference call with analysts.

On Wednesday the European Union issued a sharp warning to Musk, saying he must do “significantly” more to fight disinformation, such as reinforcement of content moderation, in order to comply with EU law.

“There is still huge work ahead” for Twitter, said Thierry Breton, the EU commissioner for the internal market.