Former minister admits ‘flaws’ in Merah case

Former interior minister Claude Guéant has admitted to “flaws” in the way the authorities dealt with Toulouse gunman Mohamed Merah.

Former minister admits 'flaws' in Merah case

Speaking to radio station Europe 1, Claude Guéant, interior minister at the time of the incident, said notable failures included the manner of the raid on Merah’s house.

“I recognise that there was one fault during the raid – it was when Merah left his apartment to make a phone call, escaping police, so it would seem, by the basement of the building – which he of course knew very well,” he said.

Guéant also pointed out French intelligence followed Merah before the incident, claiming he was a “complex character”.

“It seemed he was very reserved, weary, isolated and pent-up, but at the same time he was someone who went to nightclubs, occasionally dressed as a punk,” said Guéant.

“He was very difficult to figure out.”

President François Hollande also admitted yesterday in Toulouse, during a memorial service for Merah’s victims, to “flaws” in the case.

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French president’s ex girlfriend says she has been sacked by magazine

Valerie Trierweiler, the ex-girlfriend of former French president François Hollande, said on Thursday that she had been sacked by Paris Match magazine.

French president's ex girlfriend says she has been sacked by magazine
Valerie Trierweiler wrote a tell-all book about the former president's affair. Photo: AFP

The journalist took revenge on Hollande for spurning her for actress Julie Gayet with a sensational 2014 kiss-and-tell memoir called Thank You for This Moment, which all but sank Hollande's presidency.

The book became an instant bestseller, and Hollande, a Socialist, never lived down his alleged references to the “toothless” poor.

Trierweiler, 55, had worked for the glossy weekly as a political correspondent, interviewer and columnist for three decades.


“I discovered in the middle of my summer holidays in an extremely brutal way that I have been sacked from Paris Match after 30 years,” Trierweiler said on Twitter.

“This sacking was for no reason and has left me shocked and astonished,” she added.

Trierweiler was famously admitted to hospital after Hollande's affair was revealed by paparazzi images of his nightly visits by scooter to Gayet's apartment.

The politician had tried to portray himself as a safe pair of hands “Mr Normal” in contrast to his mercurial predecessor, Nicolas Sarkozy.

As well as spending most of her career at Paris Match, Trierweiler also interviews politicians for the French television channel Direct 8.