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French President, first lady split

Break-up comes after reports of Hollande's infidelity


French President Francois Hollande has split with the woman considered to be the country's first lady amid reports of infidelity.

A presidential aide, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to speak publicly about the matter, confirmed that Hollande ended his seven-year romance with Valerie Trierweiler.

The break-up was first reported by Agence France Presse, which said that Hollande told it in a telephone conversation Saturday that "I make it known that I have put an end" to the relationship.

Hollande told the news agency that he was speaking in a personal capacity and not as head of state.

He and Trierweiler have lived together since 2007, and while they're unmarried, Trierweiler occupied the so-called "madame wing" of the presidential palace, travelled abroad with Hollande and functioned as the first lady.

Trierweiler was admitted to hospital January 10th after a French gossip magazine published photos it says showed him having an affair with actress Julie Gayet. Gayet is suing Closer magazine, accusing it of breaking privacy laws.

Hollande had promised to clear up confusion over his love life before a state visit to the United States Febuary 11th.

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