Should it be a surprise to anyone that the president of France - yes, France! - is said to be having an affair? Well, maybe, given the president is Francois Hollande.
So, in light of the French leader's much-discussed liaisons with actress Julie Gayet, here are the 13 key things you need to know about his alleged affair, which is the talk of Paris.
1. Mistress Gayet, is 18 years younger than her presidential paramour
2. 77 per cent of France believes the affair to be private and are unperturbed by the revelations.
3. The attitude to sex in France is much less illicit than in the UK. Consequently, a French poll shows a staggering 84 per cent of people have not changed their opinion of Hollande.
4. Mr. Hollande was pictured arriving at Gayet’s flat near the Elysee Palace for one of his trysts on a three-wheeled moped driven by his bodyguard; he had disguised himself with the aid of a helmet and a dark coat. Remarkably, some seem more appalled at the mode of transport and the security risks than the cheating act itself.
5. Many of the films actress, Julie Gayet, has appeared in are of an erotic persuasion, appearing topless and in some cases nude, with roles ranging from a closet lesbian to a prostitute drug-addict
6. The pair are rumoured to have met at a £2.5m Parisian love nest, allegedly owned by actor Michel Ferracci, but Hollande has denied this.
7. Hollande’s 48-year-old girlfriend, Valérie Trierweiler, was taken to hospital upon hearing the news of the affair (she is reported to be in shock). There are, however, rumours that she had been privy to the whisperings across Paris over the preceding months.
8. In an online poll carried out by French magazine, Le Point, 89 per cent of the 13,136 people who voted, called on the president to dump his 'first girlfriend', Trierweiler. Critics hold the view that the taxpayer should not be funding her extravagant lifestyle - she has five members of staff, as well as access to luxurious homes, an impeccable wardrobe, private jets and official cars. MP Jean-Christophe Lagarde, said: "She plays the role of the first lady of France, when it appears that there is another first lady."
9. Trierweiler is no stranger to the sexual escapades of Hollande, as she herself was the politician’s former mistress, and he left his then partner, Ségolène Royal, the mother of his four children, for the former journalist.
10. In the 2013 satirical political film, Quai d’Orsay, Gayet plays Valérie Dumontheil, a sexually alluring policy advisor at the ministry of foreign affairs, leading French paper, the Metro, to speculate "Did she get advice from her new boyfriend to prepare for the role?".
11. Mr Hollande’s secret service bodyguard is reported to have brought the pair croissants for breakfast following one of their alleged nights of passion.
12. Their alleged affair has been the talk of Paris for almost a year although has been strongly denied until now.
13. Gayet appeared on French current affairs show, Grand Journal, and was asked about Hollande. She responded, saying: “He used to come on set, he liked the film very much. The president loves the film. His partner much less."Suggest a correction