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French President Hollande dumps partner

January 26, 2014 14:42 IST

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French President Francois Hollande said he has split with his longstanding partner Valerie Trierweiler after his affair with an actress nearly 20 years his junior.

The announcement came after a day of rumours in the French media that Hollande would formally announce the rupture on Saturday, on the eve of a visit by Trierweiler to India for charity work.

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Image: French President Francois Hollande and Valerie Trierweiler in Paris
Photographs: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

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Saying he was speaking as a private individual, Hollande announced, "I wish to make it known that I have ended my partnership with Valerie Trierweiler."

Trierweiler, 48, remains holed up in a presidential residence in Versailles outside Paris after leaving hospital last Saturday, where she was treated for a bout of "tiredness" brought on by press revelations of Hollande's affair with 41-year-old actress Julie Gayet.

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Image: Hollande is reportedly having an affair with actress Julie Gayet
Photographs: Jean-Paul Pelissier/Reuters

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Trierweiler is due to fly to Mumbai on Sunday for a charity trip organised by French relief organisation Action Against Hunger, in her first public appearance since the scandal broke.

Hollande, 59, announced his separation from Segolene Royal, a senior member of his Socialist party and a presidential candidate in 2007, just after she lost the election to Nicolas Sarkozy.

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Image: Valerie Trierweiler is expected to visit India in the coming week for charity work
Photographs: Stephane Mahe/Reuters

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Trierweiler is not married to Hollande but assumed the role of First Lady at official functions after Hollande's election in 2012.

Hollande's announcement comes after a spat between Trierweiler and her lawyer Frederique Giffard, who said o Thursday that her client was aware that a "clarification" on her tangled situation was due.

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Image: Hollande kisses Trierweiler in Paris in March 2012
Photographs: Christophe Ena/Reuters

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