French prosecutors investigate alleged assault of female soldier by colleague after party in July
According to Libération, the alleged victim and alleged attacker were both colleagues deployed at the high-security office at the Élysée Palace. Photograph: Eric Feferberg/AFP/Getty Images
The Guardian- Angelique Chrisafisin Paris
French prosecutors are investigating allegations that a female soldier in Emmanuel Macron’s defence staff was raped by a serviceman colleague after a farewell party at the Élysée Palace in July.
The alleged assault took place this summer after a going-away reception for a general and two others that was attended by Macron, according to French daily Libération, which first reported the accusations.
The paper said the farewell reception began at the Élysée Palace, where Macron said a few words and left at about 10pm. Some of those present then left the Élysée and moved on to the premises of the president’s personal military staff on Rue de l’Élysee, on an adjacent street. That is where the attack is alleged to have taken place.
According to Libération, the two soldiers, the alleged victim and alleged attacker, were colleagues deployed at the high-security office at the Élysée Palace dealing with sensitive government matters, most of them classified or top secret.
Libération reported that the young woman arrived at the police station nearest to the Élysée after the alleged assault and immediately reported the rape that night.
The accused soldier had been questioned as an “assisted witness” by prosecutors, a status indicating he remains subject to further interrogations but has not been formally charged, a judicial source told AFP.
Asked for comment, a presidential official said that “as soon as the authorities were aware of these claims, measures were immediately taken” to support the alleged victim and “the person accused was immediately transferred far from the Élysée”.
Macron’s office would await judicial investigations before deciding on any further action, an official told news agencies.