Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Gaza: A Truce At All Costs?

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Brazzaville ceasefire talks deliver fragile deal

Read more

FOCUS

Sluggish tourist season in Crimea

Read more

ENCORE!

Bartabas : Mixing Christ with Spanish music and dancing horses

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Shifts in the propaganda war waged between Israelis and Palestinians

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French MPs face quandary in pro-Palestinian rallies

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Yezid Sayigh, Senior Associate at the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut

Read more

#TECH 24

Mind the Gender Gap : getting more women into the tech sector

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Bolivian children: heading to work aged 10

Read more

  • France says missing Algerian plane 'probably crashed'

    Read more

  • 51 French nationals aboard missing Algerian plane

    Read more

  • Deadly strike on UN shelter in Gaza Strip

    Read more

  • Pope meets with Sudanese Christian woman sentenced to death for apostasy

    Read more

  • Algerian jet vanishes: 'We should eliminate the missile hypothesis'

    Read more

  • Italy’s Nibali cruises to easy victory in 18th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Iraqi parliament elects moderate Kurd as president

    Read more

  • US, European aviation agencies lift travel restrictions to Tel Aviv

    Read more

  • No end to fighting until Israel ends Gaza blockade, Hamas says

    Read more

  • Two foreign women shot dead in western Afghanistan

    Read more

  • At least 60 killed in attack on prison convoy near Baghdad

    Read more

  • Cycling is ‘winning the war on doping,’ says expert

    Read more

  • Ceasefire agreed for Central African Republic

    Read more

  • Can Jew-kissing-Arab selfie give peace a viral chance?

    Read more

  • Botched Arizona execution takes nearly two hours

    Read more

France

French far-left leader reveals assets, weight, shoe size

Text by Rachel HOLMAN

Latest update : 2013-04-12

Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the head of France’s far-left Parti de Gauche party, has become one of the latest politicians to publically disclose the details of their personal finances amid a government tax scandal, in a witty and sardonic blog post.

Over the past few days, French politicians of all persuasions have precipitated an expected bill requiring public officials and elected leaders to publicly disclose their personal assets, by taking it upon themselves to divulge the details of their wealth. Some have done it willingly, others have done it begrudgingly, but none have done it with as much wit and sarcasm as Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the leader of France’s far-left Parti de Gauche party.

Taking to his personal blog, Mélenchon published an acerbic post this week in which he provided information about his finances, shoe size and weight. While Mélenchon’s words may have drawn a few laughs, they also echoed criticism by other politicians of the government’s push to introduce legislation aimed at creating greater transparency in the wake of an embarassing tax-evasion scandal. Former French prime minister François Fillon slammed the so-called “moralisation of politics” bill as a sort-of “voyeurism”, while others have branded it as downright invasive.

Although Mélenchon described the media frenzy and pressure on politicians over the issue as nothing short of “malice”, he also laced his commentary with humour and derision.

“My name in Jean-Luc Mélenchon. I was born August 19, 1951 in Tangier in Morocco. I am 1.74 metres tall. I weigh 79 kilos. My shirts are a size 41/42. My pants are a size 42. My shoes size is 42. All of my hair is completely natural and dye-free,” the far-left leader wrote.

Mélenchon also took aim at both French President François Hollande and far-right leader Marine Le Pen, stating that he had “not inherited a castle to live in”, in reference to the Elysée palace, nor had he been handed “a party created by my father,” a clear allusion to Le Pen’s Front National party.

Adopting a more serious tone, Mélenchon then delved into the details of his personal finances, listing a three-bedroom apartment in Paris’ trendy 10th arrondissement and a net savings of 150,000 euros as among his assets.

The far-left leader, however, ended his post on a more playful note.

“I don’t know the value of the works of art that I have created with my paintbrush, my pencil or my camera. I think they must be of considerable worth,” Mélenchon wrote, before concluding with an off-beat appeal to the public. “I’m looking to buy a bigger home in my neighbourhood and I thank anyone who has an interesting proposition.”
 

Date created : 2013-04-12

  • FRANCE

    Socialists drop Cahuzac from party after tax scandal

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French politicians rush to reveal their assets

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French ministers must declare assets publicly, PM says

    Read more

COMMENT(S)