Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Virunga Park chief shot

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Algerian election: Bouteflika votes in wheelchair

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Algeria's media: a mixture of censorship and free speech

Read more

DEBATE

Algeria: What's the Choice? Incumbent Bouteflika Votes in Wheelchair

Read more

WEB NEWS

Nigerian web users call for end to violence

Read more

FOCUS

Bitcoin in the US: A monetary revolution?

Read more

ENCORE!

Fast cars and slow trains

Read more

WEB NEWS

Chile: online mobilization to help Valparaiso fire victims

Read more

FACE-OFF

François Hollande: France's most unpopular president

Read more

  • With a strong French presence, veterans and fresh faces, Cannes aims to please

    Read more

  • Russia and West agree on steps to ease Ukraine crisis

    Read more

  • Nobel-winning Colombian writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez dies at 87

    Read more

  • Low turnout in Algerian election tipped to return Bouteflika

    Read more

  • Chelsea Clinton says she is pregnant

    Read more

  • French troops free five aid workers kidnapped in Mali by Islamists

    Read more

  • In pictures: Iranian woman pardons son’s killer at the gallows

    Read more

  • After cup defeat, Spanish pundits read last rites for Barcelona

    Read more

  • Frantic search for survivors of sunken South Korea ferry

    Read more

  • India heads to polls in single largest day of voting

    Read more

  • Ukraine talks open in Geneva as Putin talks tough on TV

    Read more

  • Pro-Russian separatists killed in attack on Black Sea base

    Read more

  • Man executed in Texas for 2002 triple murder

    Read more

  • Scandal-hit French doctor Jacques Servier dies at 92

    Read more

  • Belgian head of wildlife reserve shot in DR Congo

    Read more

  • Crunch talks on Ukraine begin in Geneva

    Read more

  • Stagehand of God? Maradona's legendary goal inspires a play

    Read more

  • US rolls out red carpet for French critic of capitalism

    Read more

  • N. Korea not amused by London hair salon's Kim Jong-un ad

    Read more

  • Real Madrid beat old foes Barcelona to lift Copa del Rey

    Read more

  • France's new PM targets welfare in drive to cut spending

    Read more

  • Campaigning against Bouteflika's re-election... in France

    Read more

  • Brazil club Mineiro cancel Anelka signing after no-show

    Read more

  • Syria 'torture' photos silence UN Security Council members

    Read more

  • Paris laboratory loses deadly SARS virus samples

    Read more

France

Strauss-Kahn returns home to France

©

Video by Marc Perelman

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-09-05

Former IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn has returned to France for the first time since New York prosecutors dropped sexual assault charges brought against him by a hotel maid.

REUTERS - Dominique Strauss-Kahn, his presidential hopes shattered by a sex assault scandal that rocked his homeland, returned on Sunday to France, where he faces a frosty reception from the public and unease among his political allies.

The former IMF chief arrived at Paris’s Roissy Charles de Gaulle airport at about 7 a.m. (0500 GMT) with his wife Anne Sinclair. Police escorts whisked the couple through the terminal, past waiting media, and into a car.

Dressed in a suit and smiling, Strauss-Kahn arrived at his appartment in the luxurious Place des Vosges square in central Paris an hour later. He waved, but made no comment as he pushed through a sea of flashing media cameras.

His homecoming marks the end of a three-month struggle through New York’s criminal court system after he was charged with attempting to rape a New York hotel maid. The case was dropped after her credibility was thrown into doubt.

His Socialist Party allies have cheered the withdrawal of charges against the man formerly tipped as a possible favourite to win the 2012 presidential election, but the damage to his image from the affair make his future unclear.

"Let’s not put pressure on him," Francois Pupponi, a close ally and mayor of the northern Paris suburb of Sarcelles where Strauss-Kahn built his political base as mayor in the late 1990s.

"He needs to rebuild himself," Pupponi told LCI television, moments after the couple arrived at Roissy. "What’s important is that he is back in France. He is going to be able to think about the future with more clarity."

French media said Strauss-Kahn was expected to make a statement later in the day.

Future uncertain

The shock arrest in mid-May of the former finance minister, one of France’s most talented economic thinkers, thrust the country’s political landscape into turmoil, with the main opposition Socialists forced to find alternative candidates.

Many of Strauss-Kahn’s former backers have now repositioned themselves behind either former party leader Francois Hollande, who is leading opinion polls for the Socialist primary contest, and his rival Martine Aubry.

In the days before his homecoming, Socialists maintained an uneasy silence about Strauss-Kahn’s future role in politics, with a recent survey showing that about two-thirds of French voters do not wish to see him take a government post if the Socialists win power next April.

Despite initial anger in France at the way he was paraded before media cameras in handcuffs, many in France are uncomfortable with the details dredged up by the case about Strauss-Kahn’s private life and reputation as a womaniser.

Hollande has spoken vaguely of a role for Strauss-Kahn in the election with no mention of a ministerial post.

Aubry was similarly equanimous this week when she told Canal+ television she agreed with other women when it came to Strauss-Kahn’s attitude toward the opposite sex.

Of his closest allies, Pierre Moscovici, a former Socialist minister, has become campaign coordinator for Hollande. Veteran leftist Jean-Christope Cambadelis is backing Aubry.

Former Socialist prime minister Michel Rocard said on Monday that Strauss-Kahn "has a mental illness ... He’s out of the game." He later apologised for the remark.

Adding to his troubles, Strauss-Kahn still faces a civil case in New York and an accusation of attempted rape by a woman 30 years his junior in France.

Date created : 2011-09-04

  • POLITICS

    Strauss-Kahn homecoming puts Socialists in a muddle

    Read more

  • USA

    Strauss-Kahn pays farewell visit to IMF

    Read more

  • JUSTICE

    Judge dismisses charges against Strauss-Kahn

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)