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Sex Scandal Breaks Up French President & “First Lady”

PARIS -- French President Francois Hollande issued a written communique on Saturday announcing that he has reached “the end of his communal life” with longtime companion Valerie Trierweiler, confirming reports that the couple had broken up over reports he was having an extramarital affair.

"I am making it known that I ended my communal life with Valerie Trierweiler," Hollande said, adding that he was speaking personally and not as the head of state because the matter concerned "his private life."

The statement, delivered through the state-backed Agence France Presse news agency, ended a drawn out scandal for the French president that began two weeks ago when a tabloid magazine, "Closer," published photos that it said were evidence of his secret affair with actress Julie Gayet.

In a report on its website, the Le Parisien newspaper quoted an unidentified member of Trierweiler's entourage as saying, “He consulted with her and and told her about it. She accepts the situation as fact but she let him take the initiative on his act."

Hollande had promised the French public during a New Year press conference that he would clarify his relationship with Trierweiler before he travelled to the U.S. on an official visit on Feb. 11. The first lady was to have joined him on that trip.

Instead, she will travel to India alone on Sunday as a normal French citizen for the humanitarian charity Action against Hunger. The journey to Bombay was planned a while ago before the scandal broke and organizers have said the trip is being paid by private donors and not by French taxpayers.

Reuters contributed to this report.