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French President Emmanuel Macron delivers his New Year wishes to the press at the Elysee Palace in Paris, on Jan. 3, 2018. Photo: Ludovic Marin / AFP / Getty Images

French President Emmanuel Macron's push for a law to battle "fake news" looks like a tough stand against Russia. Macron himself was the victim of a Russian disinformation campaign during last year's election season, and he earned praise for calling the Russian outlets RT and Sputnik "agencies of influence and propaganda" during his first meeting with Putin.

But while Macron has styled himself as a defender of Western democracy, his government has sought closer economic ties with Russia, despite EU and U.S. sanctions and Russia's continued support for the war in Ukraine.

France is already the biggest foreign investor in Russia, where French firms have 170,000 employees and send over $5 billion in exports. Macron seems set to double down on his pivot to Russia in May, when he is expected to launch a renewed economic agenda at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, Russia's Davos.

Why it matters: Economic sanctions are only as strong as the EU block's weakest link, and Macron's overtures to Russia give other nations an excuse to follow suit. But he can't have it both ways: Being tough on Russia for its bad behavior means putting your money where your mouth is.

Alina Polyakova is the David M. Rubenstein Fellow for Foreign Policy at the Brookings Institution.

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
13 mins ago - Technology

TikTok gets more time (again)

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The White House is again giving TikTok's Chinese parent company more to satisfy national security concerns, rather than initiating legal action, a source familiar with the situation tells Axios.

The state of play: China's ByteDance had until Friday to resolve issues raised by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS), which is chaired by Treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin. This was the company's third deadline, with CFIUS having provided two earlier extensions.

Federal judge orders Trump administration to restore DACA

DACA recipients and their supporters rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court on June 18. Photo: Drew Angerer via Getty

A federal judge on Friday ordered the Trump administration to fully restore the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, giving undocumented immigrants who arrived in the U.S. as children a chance to petition for protection from deportation.

Why it matters: DACA was implemented under former President Obama, but President Trump has sought to undo the program since taking office. Friday’s ruling will require Department of Homeland Security officers to begin accepting applications starting Monday and guarantee that work permits are valid for two years.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci says he accepted Biden's offer to be chief medical adviser "on the spot" — The recovery needs rocket fuel.
  2. Health: CDC: It's time for "universal face mask use" — Death rates rising across the country — Study: Increased testing can reduce transmission.
  3. Economy: U.S. economy adds 245,000 jobs in November as recovery slows — America's hidden depression: K-shaped recovery threatens Biden administration.
  4. Cities: Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate
  5. Vaccine: What vaccine trials still need to do.
  6. World: UN warns "2021 is literally going to be catastrophic"
  7. 🎧 Podcast: Former FDA chief Rob Califf on the vaccine approval process.