Man held over attempt to ram palace gates

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A 67-YEAR-OLD driver tried to ram through a gate of the French presidential palace yesterday.

He was arrested and treated for light injuries.

The reason for the man’s unusual actions is unclear.

French president Francois Hollande’s office is not commenting on the incident at the Elysee Palace, except to say that the president was in his office at the time and is working as usual.

The driver was at moderate speed when he approached the palace, and the car made contact with the gilded gates before it was stopped by presidential guards, according to a judicial official.

She described the suspect as a 67-year-old Italian citizen, but could not confirm French Press reports that he is a theatre director angry over cuts to cultural subsidies.

He was taken to hospital in Paris for “very light injuries” sustained in the incident, the official said. No one else was hurt.

The man faces possible charges of putting others’ lives in danger, degrading public property, and voluntary armed violence.

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