Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Competing narratives in Malaysia Airlines disaster coverage

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Kenya : Police arrest 8 over Mombasa rampage

Read more

FOCUS

Overfishing and the global appetite for bluefin tuna: can Tokyo turn the tide?

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Too many graphic images from Gaza ?

Read more

FASHION

Who's next in Paris, an event with international ready-to-wear and fashion accessories collections

Read more

ENCORE!

Tunisia's Carthage International Festival turns 50

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

Muslims and Christians clean up Bangui, and violence spirals out of control in Algeria's Gardaia

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Is there such thing as 'telegenic' victims of war?

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

2014-07-22 07:21 IN THE FRENCH PRESS

Read more

  • Defying UK, France to proceed with sale of warship to Russia

    Read more

  • Israel hits targets in Gaza despite diplomatic efforts for ceasefire

    Read more

  • Flight MH17 shot down ‘by mistake', US intelligence indicates

    Read more

  • US courts issue conflicting reports on Obamacare

    Read more

  • Video: Lebanon fears fallout from regional turmoil

    Read more

  • Widodo wins Indonesian presidential election

    Read more

  • US, European airlines suspend flights to Tel Aviv over Israel-Gaza conflict

    Read more

  • Australian veteran Rogers claims 16th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • France gives go-ahead to pro-Palestinian Paris rally

    Read more

  • French Jews mourn French-Israeli soldier killed in Gaza

    Read more

  • PSG punished by UEFA for abuse of disabled Chelsea fans

    Read more

  • Colombia's Rodriguez signs '€80m' contract with Real Madrid

    Read more

  • Children killed in minibus crash in eastern France

    Read more

  • A call for harmony in riot-hit ‘Little Jerusalem’ Paris suburb

    Read more

France

Junior minister resigns after claims of sexual harassment

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-05-30

France's junior minister for the civil service, Georges Tron, resigned on Sunday following accusations of sexually harassing staff who served with him in his concurrent post as mayor of the town of Draveil.

AFP - A minister has resigned from the government Sunday to fight allegations of sexual harassment, two weeks after ex-IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn's sensational New York arrest on sex crime charges.

Civil service minister Georges Tron, accused of sexually harassing two women who worked for him at the town hall where he is mayor, said in his letter of resignation to President Nicolas Sarkozy that he would prove his innocence.

He stepped down after prosecutors said Wednesday they had opened a preliminary investigation into accusations of sexual aggression and rape against him.

His lawyer has described his accusers as "inveterate liars."

The 53-year-old minister said in his resignation letter he would disprove the "vindictive" accusations by the former municipal employees, one of whom he said was sacked for fraud and the other for "undignified behaviour."

The two women, aged 34 and 36, claimed in the complaints they lodged with the public prosecutor that Tron had assaulted them when they worked in the town hall of the south Paris suburb Draveil, where Tron is mayor.

The alleged incidents took place between 2007 and 2010.

One of the women said she was encouraged to speak up after the arrest of another French political heavyweight, former socialist minister Dominique Strauss-Kahn.

"When I see that a chambermaid was capable of taking on Dominique Strauss-Kahn, I tell myself I don’t have the right to stay silent," the woman, who was not identified by name, told Le Parisien newspaper.

"Other women may be suffering what I suffered. I have to help them. We must break this code of silence," she said.

Strauss-Kahn has stepped down from his post at the head of the International Monetary Fund to devote himself to fighting charges that he tried to rape a chambermaid in his New York hotel suite.

Tron's resignation was announced in a statement by Prime Minister Francois Fillon, who praised Tron for his "courage" in taking a decision which was in the "general interest".

Tron has linked the case to a feud with relatives of right-wing National Front leader Marine Le Pen living in Draveil, which prompted Le Pen to announce that she was suing him for defamation.

He has alleged that his political rivals were trying to gain momentum from the arrest of Strauss-Kahn.

"I am not naive. They are trying to echo what's happening on the other side of the Atlantic," he told AFP on Tuesday.

Le Pen, who has dismissed the allegation, said Thursday she would sue Tron for libel. She had been calling for his resignation since Friday.

After examining the evidence, prosecutors can decide to shelve the case against the ex-minister, refer it to an examining magistrate or send it straight for trial.

Tron is a member of the rightwing UMP party led by Sarkozy, who is widely expected to seek re-election in next year's presidential vote in France.

Strauss-Kahn had been seen as a leading presidential hopeful for the opposition Socialists, but his arrest in New York has likely scuppered his chances.

Strauss-Kahn was released on bail this week after spending nearly a week behind bars following his dramatic arrest just hours after the alleged assault, as he was about to take off on an Air France plane for Paris.

He is due back in court on June 6, when he is expected to enter a formal plea of not guilty. If so, the case would move to trial later this year.

Date created : 2011-05-29

  • FRANCE

    Junior minister accused of sexual harassment

    Read more

COMMENT(S)