VERSAILLES, France – The Latest on French President Emmanuel Macron's priorities (all times local):
French President Emmanuel Macron has announced Europe-wide public conferences later this year in an effort to reinvigorate the European Union after Britain's vote to leave.
In a sweeping speech laying out his priorities for his five-year presidency, Macron insisted "we need a stronger Europe."
He said he understood why many Europeans see the EU as bureaucratic, distant and uncaring. As a result, he said France and Germany will launch conferences open to everyone in an effort to get citizens more closely involved in EU activities.
He also said European countries should work more closely to help political refugees while fighting migrant smuggling and strengthening borders against illegal migration.
French President Emmanuel Macron is ordering a strategic review of the French military to respond to evolving threats, and pledging to reinvigorate French diplomacy.
Macron said he would maintain France's military interventions against extremists abroad. He also insisted on the importance of maintaining "the path of negotiation, of dialogue" for long-term solutions.
He said "threats have never been so great" and said countries need to cooperate more than ever.
He spoke at an extraordinary parliamentary session Monday in Versailles, the day after taking part in a summit in Mali for a new anti-extremist force in Africa.
French President Emmanuel Macron is vowing to lift a state of emergency that has been in place since 2015, but also to harden permanent security measures to fight Islamic extremism and other threats.
He insisted on the need to "guarantee full respect for individual liberties" amid concerns that new measures would allow police too many powers.
Speaking at a special parliamentary session Monday in Versailles, Macron promised to "restore the freedoms of the French" after nearly two years under a state of emergency. He promised to lift it in the autumn.
He promised tougher new measures to prevent any new attack "without pity ... without weakness."
He spoke two days after authorities charged a young man with plotting a possible attack against the president or minority groups.
French President Emmanuel Macron says he wants to speed up lawmaking to better adapt the process to a rapidly changing society.
In a speech Monday addressing lawmakers at the Palace of Versailles, Macron said he wants to simplify and accelerate the process of voting laws in both houses, the Senate and the National Assembly.
He proposed that some "simple" bills be voted in parliament's commissions instead of in plenary sessions.
Macron also wants to reduce the number of seats in parliament — which now stand at 925 lawmakers — by one third.
French President Emmanuel Macron will lay out his political, security and diplomatic priorities at an extraordinary joint session of parliament at the chateau of Versailles.
Critics who fear Macron is trying to amass too much power are staging protests over Monday's event. After his new centrist party dominated parliamentary elections and split the opposition, political rivals are comparing Macron to Napoleon, or the Roman king-of-the-gods Jupiter.
They are especially angry that he wants to strip worker protections through a decree-like procedure, allowing little parliamentary debate.
Macron is also breaking with tradition in convening the Versailles parliament session before his prime minister has won his first confidence vote in parliament. Monday's event is similar to a state of the union speech, and meant to set the tone for his five-year presidency.