Christian Pineau

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Christian Pineau (French pronunciation: [kʁistjɑ̃ pino]; 14 October 1904 - 5 April 1995) was a noted French Resistance fighter.

He was born in Chaumont-en-Bassigny, Haute-Marne, France and died in Paris.

His father-in-law was the writer Jean Giraudoux, who was married to Pineau's mother. Later, Christian Pineau will say that it's Giraudoux who gave him the love of writing.

A World War II French Resistance leader and a close ally of Charles de Gaulle, he was arrested by the Gestapo in 1943 and survived Buchenwald concentration camp.

He represented the Sarthe Department as a Socialist in the National Assembly from 1946 to 1958. After the war, he served as a Minister in French governments between 1945-1958. He was minister of Supply in de Gaulle's government (1945) and Minister of Public works (1947–1950) in different governments. For a short time, he was Finance Minister in 1948. Designated as Prime minister by president Coty after Mendes France's fall in February 1955, the National Assembly refused to invest his cabinet by 312 votes against 268. So he was for two days between 17 and 19 February 1955 the Prime Minister of France.

As Foreign Minister (February 1956 - May 1958), he was responsible for handling the Suez canal crisis and he signed the Treaty of Rome on behalf of France. With Guy Mollet, he visited Moscow.

He was always an advocate of European integration.

Protocols of Sèvres

In October 1956 he signed the Protocols of Sèvres with Britain and Israel on behalf of France. He wrote several books:

  • La simple vérité, regard sur la période 1940-1945, Editions Julliard
  • Khrouchtchev, Perrin, 1964
  • Suez, Robert Laffont, 1976
  • Mon cher député, Julliard, 1959
  • Le grand pari, l'aventure du Traité de Rome (with Christiane Rimbaud)

and also children's books: Plume et le saumon, L'ourse aux pattons verts, Histoire de la forêt de Bercé, La planète aux enfants perdus.

He is buried in Le Père Lachaise Cemetery, Paris, France.

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