Francois Hollande 'liberated' after affair exposure

Jan 19, 2014, 07:16 IST | Agencies

Friends of the French President say that he has been treating the business as a political, and not romantic, problem

Francois Hollande is believed to be liberated after the recent global exposure of his affair with actress Julie Gayet. A friend of the President said that Hollande is managing this business as if it was a political problem, not a romantic problem.

Hollande’s alleged lover, actress Julie Gayet
Hollande's alleged lover, actress Julie Gayet

Other sources say that the crisis has revealed the true Hollande — not the "Flanby" (caramel custard) of his nickname but a tough, cold and driven man. President Hollande's surprising "calm" comes partly, insiders say, from a sense of having triumphed against all the odds at his press conference last Tuesday.

Francois Hollande. Pic/AFP

For the rest of the world, the President's refusal to comment on the crisis in his private life was a cause for astonishment and mockery. Yet the consensus of the French media and political classes is that the two-hour performance by Hollande was a "tour de force".

Closer magazine, which exposed the affair last week, has produced new revelations. The magazine has reported that the relationship had started two years ago before Hollande was elected President. Meanwhile, Gayet has denied that she's expecting his baby. The 41-year-old French actress made the revelation on the Europe 1 radio station in Paris. The pregnancy claims first surfaced on the social networking site Twitter. The President finally visited his First Lady in the hospital a week after she was taken ill following revelations that he had cheated on her.

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