Former first lady speaks out on memoir

Telling all: Valerie Trierweiler has chronicled her seven years as the girlfriend of French president Francois Hollande.

Telling all: Valerie Trierweiler has chronicled her seven years as the girlfriend of French president Francois Hollande.

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FRANCE’S FORMER first lady Valerie Trierweiler has claimed her nation’s politics is blighted
by misogyny as she made a scathing assessment of her former partner’s tenure in power.

The one-time partner of French president Francois Hollande has written a surprise, tell-all book chronicling
her seven years as his
girlfriend, which ended when it was reported he was having
an affair with actress Julie
Gayet.

The book, Merci pour ce moment (Thank You For This Moment), is thought likely to damage Mr Hollande in the eyes of the French people with her claims that he calls the poor people “the toothless” and that he instructed her to be given high doses of tranquillisers, shortly after they had broken up, to keep her in hospital and out of his way.

In an interview with Kirsty Wark on tonight’s BBC Newsnight, Ms Trierweiler is asked: “Is France misogyinist?”

She answers: “In the realm of politics, yes. Women in politics encounter opposition as a matter of course.”

Asked why she had written the book, Ms Trierweiler, 49, a journalist, claims it had been a “form of therapy”, and says the title “will remain a mystery, a message that only Francois Hollande himself will understand”.

And she adds: “It’s not a personal attack on Hollande at all, it is the story of our relationship, there are good moments and bad moments I describe in it.”

Ms Wark says: “You called him king of the double speak with ambiguity and perpetual lies. So what kind of man was that?”

She answers: “Unfortunately, these are the characteristics of lots of politicians. These are the mysteries of love. I was in love with him.”

Asked if he really called the poor “the toothless”, she says “of course”.

The interview is to be broadcast on Newsnight tonight at 10.30pm.

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