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French president began affair two years ago

French magazine Closer revealed that Francois Hollande has been with actress Julie Gayet since 2011 and the two would spend weekends in the south of France

The tumult surrounding Francois Hollande has grown with the publication of a string of further allegations concerning the French president’s personal life. In a second ‘special edition’ that went on sale on Friday morning, Closer magazine claimed to have more allegations of the on-off relationship between Hollande and Julie Gayet, which it claims has lasted more than two years and has included weekends spent together in the south of France.

The magazine reported that Julie Gayet introduced Francois Hollande to her grandmother and other family members too. File pics
The magazine reported that Julie Gayet introduced Francois Hollande to her grandmother and other family members too. File pics

The magazine alleges that far from being simply a fling or a recent romance, the couple have been living an “eventful idyll” since 2011 shortly before Hollande’s campaign to be the Socialist party’s nomination for the presidential election the following year. Closer reported that Hollande met Gayet at an informal gathering of friends and political allies in a Paris restaurant in 2011 after the actor supported the president’s former partner and mother of his four children, Segolene Royal in her unsuccessful battle against Nicolas Sarkozy in the 2007 presidential election.

Francois Hollande
Francois Hollande

Closer claimed the pair originally met at an apartment in Rue du Faubourg-Saint Honor, not far from the Elysee, where the actor has her film production company, but stopped meeting there because a concierge recognised them and tried to take, and sell, photographs. The magazine also quotes a restaurant owner in Mougins, a picturesque village outside Cannes, where Hollande has a flat, who claims to remember the couple dining there. It also claims that she introduced the president to her grandmother and members of her family who live outside Paris.

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