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Journalist sacked for criticising French First Lady

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Melbourne : A newspaper has reportedly sacked one of France’s best known journalists for writing too many “offensive” articles about Valerie Trierweiler, the new First Lady. Philippe Sollers, who has written for Le Journal du Dimanche for the past 13 years, had apparently gone “one step too far” in an article that attacked Trierweiler’s controversial Twitter message that provoked political outrage in France earlier this month.Trierweiler, the partner of the French President, Francois Hollande, tweeted her support for a political rival of his former lover Segolene Royal for a seat in parliament. Royal subsequently lost.
The 76-year-old, who has written several novels, had criticised Trierweiler in several articles.“Let’s not muck about, this is serious, it’s pure suffering, it’s a dagger blow administered by the first ‘blade’ of France. The elections, the euro crisis, the massacres in Syria, the taxes to come, the slow march of National Front, they are all nothing compared to that tweet,” the Age quoted him as writing on Sunday.Le Point magazine had claimed on Monday that Sollers had been sacked. To complicate things further, Dimanche is owned by the publisher Lagardere, which also owns Paris Match magazine, the publication where Trierweiler still works

Patrice Trapier, the deputy director of writing at Le Journal du Dimanche, insisted that Sollers had not been a victim of censorship.“The decision to part with him goes back several days,” he said.“As has been the case for years, we renew our columnists. I had not read the last column of Philippe Sollers and it was published without any corrections. He was neither censored or fired,” he said. But Sollers told L’Express that he found the newspaper’s official version “at the very least troubling”.

“I wrote the piece and submitted it last Tuesday to the heads of the newspaper. Straight away I received a phone call telling me my collaboration with the JDD was at an end,” he claimed.“After 13 years working with the JDD, I find this way of handling things at the very least cavalier and peculiar. “It’s going to get harder and harder in this country to write about issues and ideas which seem to upset a lot of people,” he added.

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