Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy's conservative government has officially resigned, paving the way for the inauguration of president-elect Francois Hollande next week.
Prime Minister Francois Fillon notified Sarkozy by letter Thursday that he and his ministers were resigning, although the Cabinet will continue to handle daily affairs until Hollande's May 15 inauguration.
Hours after he is sworn in, Hollande will travel to Berlin to confer with Chancellor Angela Merkel on how he plans to balance German-imposed austerity policies in Europe with his pro-growth plans.
Hollande, a Socialist, was elected on Sunday in a runoff vote with 52 percent of the vote to 48 percent for Sarkozy, who voters punished for a stagnant economy, rising unemployment and signing on to the tough austerity measures.
Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.