Francois Hollande stands up in his car Tuesday as he rides up the Champs-Elysees after taking the oath of office as the new president of France. Shortly afterward, he flew to Germany to meet with Chancellor Angela Merkel and discuss the continent's economic woes.
As soon as new French President Francois Hollande was sworn in on Tuesday, he observed a postwar custom and reached out to Germany, in a move intended to underscore European solidarity and the importance of the alliance.
But it wasn't a relaxing social visit. Hollande's plane was struck by lightning en route to Berlin and had to return to Paris as a precaution. He then took another plane.
NATO has just asked the Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari to attend the May 20-21 summit in Chicago. The AP says the overture signals that the rift between NATO and Islamabad may be coming to a resolution.
Xing Wei, who raises pigeons for lucrative races in China, is shown in Beijing with his favorite bird, Ike. He sells Ike's offspring to wealthy buyers for $15,000.
Credit Louisa Lim / NPR
To the average observer, they look like ordinary pigeons, caged into a balcony in a high-rise Beijing apartment. But make no mistake. These cooing birds, according to breeder Yang Shibo, are like top-of-the-line sports cars.
"These are the Ferraris of the bird world," he says. "They're the most expensive, and the fastest."
The price of racing pigeons is soaring sky-high, pushed up by wealthy Chinese buyers.
Francois Hollande stands up in his car as he rides up the Champs-Elysees after taking the oath of office as President of France.
Credit Regis Duvignau / AP
Francois Hollande took the oath of office today in pouring rain as France's latest leader and lost no time in turning to the country's economic problems. One of his first acts was to cut his salary by nearly a third. Now he's flying to Germany to meet Chancellor Angela Merkel to talk about an unpopular European austerity program championed by his predecessor, Nicolas Sarkozy.