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PARIS — LVMH Chairman Bernard Arnault has sparked controversy by describing schoolgirl environmental activist Greta Thunberg as "demoralising" when he spoke at the luxury giant’s sustainability event in Paris.

Arnault, 70, said to be the richest man in France, said: “She’s a dynamic young girl, but she’s surrendering completely to catastrophism. I find that her views are demoralising for young people.”

His remarks came just days after the 16-year-old Thunberg angrily accused heads of state at the United Nations General Assembly in New York of doing too little to fight global warming.

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