Two ministers fail in cease-fire effort

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka, April 30 (UPI) -- The French and British foreign ministers say they have failed to negotiate a cease-fire in Sri Lanka.

EU calls for 48-hour cease-fire in Gaza

PARIS, Dec. 30 (UPI) -- Foreign ministers from the European Union called for a 48-hour cease-fire in Gaza following a meeting Tuesday evening in Paris.

European Union may investigate S. Ossetia

AVIGNON, France, Sept. 6 (UPI) -- French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said Saturday the European Union may investigate the conflict in the Georgian region of South Ossetia.

West worried Georgia crisis is expanding

BERLIN, Aug. 28 (UPI) -- Leaders in Europe are concerned that Russia's military campaign in Georgia may be repeated in other countries of the region.

EU sanctions against Russia?

BERLIN, Aug. 28 (UPI) -- The crisis over Georgia intensifies, with the European Union for the first time mulling sanctions against Russia after Moscow recognized the Georgian breakaway provinces of South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states. Observers predict a period of icy East-West relations.
STEFAN NICOLA, UPI Germany Correspondent

Dalai Lama blasts China on French trip

ROQUEREDONDE, France, Aug. 23 (UPI) -- Exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, touring France, says China is continuing its political crackdown in Tibet during the Beijing Summer Olympics.
Georgia accuses Russia of ethnic cleansing

Georgia accuses Russia of ethnic cleansing

TBILISI, Georgia, Aug. 11 (UPI) -- Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili Monday accused Russian forces of "ethnic cleansing" in Abkhazia, another breakaway region with ties to Russia.

Kouchner calls for enhancing security

VIENNA, July 17 (UPI) -- France's foreign minister Thursday called on the international community to enhance security efforts in Central Asia and increase engagement in Afghanistan.

Kouchner: Algeria becoming dangerous

ALGIERS, Algeria, June 11 (UPI) -- French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner says Algerian government inaction makes it hard for French companies to feel safe in Algeria after al-Qaida attacks.

Dozen die in 2 Algeria blasts

BENI AMRANE, Algeria, June 8 (UPI) -- Two bombs exploded minutes apart at a train station in Beni Amrane, Algeria, Sunday, killing at least 12 people, authorities said.

French foreign minister visits Iraq

NASIRIYA, Iraq, May 31 (UPI) -- French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner met with Iraqi government officials Saturday in an effort to help with the rebuilding of Iraq, officials said.

France has reached out to Hamas

PARIS, May 19 (UPI) -- French officials confirmed Monday that they have been in contact with the Hamas movement for the past several months.

Analysis: EU and Central Asian gas

WASHINGTON, April 22 (UPI) -- The European Union, gazing hungrily at Central Asia's vast oil and natural gas deposits, has long sought to weaken Russia's grip over Caspian exports. Now the EU has succeeded in getting its nose under the Turkmen tent, and in Moscow Gazprom Chief Executive Officer Alexei Miller must be drowning his sorrows, as Russia provides about 40 percent of the EU's natural gas imports.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent
France's food fight

France's food fight

LONDON, April 16 (UPI) -- France has fought a stubborn and increasingly desperate rearguard action for the past 30 years to protect its farmers against the competition of world markets through the mechanism of Europe's Common Agricultural Policy. But the answer to food shortages is fewer tariffs and more competition for farmers everywhere to sell wherever they can.
MARTIN WALKER, UPI Editor Emeritus

Negotiator says talks with pirates slow

MOGADISHU, Somalia, April 7 (UPI) -- The French government said negotiations with pirates who seized a French luxury yacht en route to Malta may take a while.
Page 2 of 5
Bernard Kouchner
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki (R) shakes hand with French President Nicolas Sarkozy while Foreign Affairs Minister Bernard Kouchner (L) and Interior Minister Michele Alliot-Marie (2-L) look on at the Elysee Palace in Paris on May 4, 2009. Talks between the leaders are expected to include armament of Iraqi Forces, investment, construction, trade and educational cooperation between both countries. (UPI Photo/ David Silpa)

Bernard Kouchner (born 1 November 1939 in Avignon) is a French politician, diplomat, and doctor. He is co-founder of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) -- also known as Doctors Without Borders -- and Doctors of the World. From 2007 until 2010 he was the French Minister of Foreign and European Affairs in the right-wing Fillon government under president Nicolas Sarkozy, although he had been in the past a minister in socialist governments.

Born to a Jewish father and a Protestant mother, he began his political career as a member of the French Communist Party (PCF), from which he was expelled in 1966 for attempting to overthrow the leadership. On a visit to Cuba in 1964, Kouchner spent the night fishing and drinking with Fidel Castro. In the protests of May 1968, he ran the medical faculty strike committee at the Sorbonne. Kouchner has three children (Julie, Camille and Antoine) by his first wife, Évelyne Pisier, a professor of law, and one child, Alexandre, by his present wife Christine Ockrent, a television journalist. He worked as a physician for the Red Cross in Biafra in 1968 (during the Nigerian Civil War). He founded Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) in 1971, and then, due to a conflict of opinion with MSF chairman Claude Malhuret, the Doctors of the World ('Médecins du Monde') in 1980. What made him co-found Médecins Sans Frontières was his experience as a physician for the Red Cross during the Nigerian Civil War that took place in Biafra, 1968. Kouchner worked as a humanitarian volunteer during the Siege of Naba’a refugee camp in Lebanon in East Beirut during the Lebanese Civil War taking risks that "other foreign aid workers weren’t, even worked closely with the Shia cleric Imam Musa al-Sadr."

From 1988, he began his government career in Socialist governments, though he was not always a member of the French Socialist Party. He became 'Secrétaire d'état', a lower position in the Cabinet, for Humanitarian Action in 1988, then Minister of Health in 1992, under Mitterrand's presidency. Later, he continued his political career in the European Parliament. Between 1993 and 1997, France was governed by right governments.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Bernard Kouchner."
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