Written by Laure Van Ruymbeke and Mathiew Leiser
Today is the inauguration day for Emmanuel Macron, the 8th president of the Vth French Republic.
Brigitte Macron was the first to arrive at the Elysée according to protocol for the First Lady. She was followed by the president-elect, Emmanuel Macron, a few minutes later. He was received by François Hollande to start the ceremonial transfer of authority.
For more than 55 minutes, the two presidents had a one-to-one discussion. It is the longest talk since François Mitterand and Jacques Chirac in 1995 who stayed together for 45 minutes. Nuclear codes and other secret information were shared behind the grand windows of the Elysée. Macron then escorted Hollande out of the French palace. The ceremony was simple and friendly as the now former president wanted.
In the middle of 300 guests, Emmanuel Macron gave his first speech as president of France. He first paid tribute to the former Presidents of the Vth Republic, from General De Gaulle to François Hollande. He said that, from tonight, he would use his energy to reconcile the French people who should believe in themselves again. Emmanuel Macron emphasised the need to bring France back to the forefront of the International stage. The country will be a “prosperous and exemplary” model to the world. His main priorities will be to fight terrorism and revitalise Europe. He assured the people that he will be here to protect them.
Around midday, Macron saluted the military in the Elysée gardens, whilst a 21 gun-salute was fired at the Invalides. As the president, he is also the head of the armed forces. This is the reason why he chose to stand in a military car to drive him on the Champs-Elysées. Presidents normally use this kind of car on the 14th of July celebrations. The “Command car” stopped a hundred meters before the Arc de Triomphe. Macron especially wanted to walk alone to join the other part of the ceremony. There, he symbolically rekindled the Unknown Soldier flame before saluting war veterans and other officials. To conclude his inauguration, the new president went to see his supporters who came in large numbers to be part of this important moment. On his way back, Macron saluted the crowds from his French Citroën DS7 and stopped a few seconds where the policeman died on the 20th of April.
After lunch, the president is planned to visit injured soldiers at Percy de Clamart hospital.
Then, At 4 (UK time) this afternoon, Brigitte and Emmanuel Macron will be received at Paris Hotel de ville for another inauguration ceremony.
Finally, the Prime Minister will be announced on Monday while the new president will make his first international trip to Berlin. The new government will be formed on Tuesday.