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France’s environment minister dismissed for budget attack

France – France’s environment minister Delphine Batho has been fired by the country’s president François Hollande because she criticised this year’s belt-tightening budget, which she expected to have serious consequences for her ministry. A replacement has already been found in Philippe Martin – France’s third environment minister in 13 months.

Batho recently expressed great displeasure at the 7% cut for her ministry, labelling it a ‘bad budget’ in a radio interview. Overall in 2014, French ministries are being asked to make cuts in central government spending amounting to roughly Euro 1.5 billion (US$ 2 billion) when compared to this year.

On hearing Batho’s statement, prime minister Jean-Marc Ayrault summoned her via Twitter and removed her from office only 10 hours later after she declined to retract her comment. ‘Touching the budget, that’s a line that should not be crossed,’ government sources have said.

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