BonjourParis France News Daily May 23-29

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BonjourParis France News Daily May 23-29
Member of Sarkozy’s cabinet resigns to fight sexual harassment charges BonjourParis France News DailyDali WiederhoftParis, May 29—Georges Tron, a junior member of President Nicolas Sarkozy‘s cabinet, resigned his post today, stating he intends to focus on his defense against sexual harrassment charges filed by two female coworkers. Tron has denied the allegations and said he intends to fight the claims. AFP reported today that the 53-year-old Tron said in his resignation letter to President Nicolas Sarkozy that he would defend himself against charges, calling his accusers “inveterate liars” who were previously released from their positions for fraud and “undignified behavior.” Tron is also the mayor of Draveil, a Paris suburb. On Wednesday two female coworkers filed police complaints alleging Tron assaulted them while giving them foot massages in his office in the years 2007-2010. According to The Telegraph , both women said the foot massages went from therapeutic to “very real sexual attacks.”  Both said they tried to commit suicide after the alleged harassment. Tron practices reflexology and The Telegraph reported Tron’s “passion for reflexology has reportedly earned him the nickname “the foot fetishist” and the “Chinese masseur” of the National Assembly. A minister said that he must have massaged “a thousand feet” —almost exclusively those of women.” RFI reported the women also accused a female deputy mayor of being involved in the incident. Tron is a member of the UMP party led by Sarkozy. Photo source   Plans for new Grand Paris super metro line approved today BonjourParis France News DailyDali Wiederhoft Paris, May 26—In the year 2013 Paris will start building a new super metro system that loops Paris in a project slated to cost over 20 billion euros, according to Les Echos. Today Société du Grand Paris (SGP) approved plans created by state, regional and local transit officials in response to a directive issued by France President Nicolas Sarkozy in 2009. The proposed transportation network connects suburbs, Orly and CDG airports. If approved, work starts in 2013 with parts of the network in use by the year 2018. Experts forecast that when completed in the year 2025, approximately 2 million passengers will use the system daily. The Conseil d’Etat will then review plans for approval expected in July. Look for more about this story in the BonjourParis Sunday weekly France news report.   DSK moves to luxury TriBeCa townhouse, will pay $50,000 monthly rent BonjourParis France News DailyDali WiederhoftParis, May 26—Dominique Strauss-Kahn moved to a luxury TriBeCa townhouse, according to La Provence. DSK is still under police monitoring in New York while he waits to face charges that he sexually assaulted a hotel maid on May 14. Real estate agents describe the TriBeCa townhouse as a three bedroom, four bath loft. The photograph accompanying the article indicates the monthly rent is $50,000 per month. DSK’s next court appearance is scheduled for June 6. He is allowed to leave the townhouse only for legal or medical appointments or weekly religious worship. On Wednesday DSK’s attorneys responded to previous media stories that reported DSK’s friends had offered cash to the victim in exchange for silence. Lawyers said no representative of DSK has contacted the victim or members of her family.   Paris Métro fares and Navigo cards going up on July 1; National taxi strike today BonjourParis France News DailyDali WiederhoftParis, May 25— Le Parisien reported today that Paris transit fares are rising again and zones 5 and 6 are merging to create a new zone 5 effective July 1. Zone 6 will be merged with current zone 5, resulting in a 13.7€ savings for monthly Navigo card users who previously bought a pass for zones 1-6. The article briefly mentioned that young people can ride for free starting in September. If approved, on July 1 the price of Navigo monthly cards used by most Paris visitors and locals for Zones 1-2 (city center) will increase to €62 from €60.40, €80.30 for Zones 1-3, €98.20 (zone 1-4) and no change for the new zone 1-5 that includes current zones 5 and 6. That fare is €109.90. The price for a book (carnet) subway tickets will rise 4.17% to €12.50. In other news from Paris, there was a brief taxi strike today. Drivers are protesting the lack of respect for the profession, high costs to fuel and maintain taxis and concerns about transporting sick passengers. France Soir news and video here:   Digital world leaders meeting again today in Paris for Day Two of eG8 forum BonjourParis France News Daily Dali Wiederhoft Paris, May 25—Digital world leaders met again today in Paris for Day Two of the eG8 forum. Ironically, speakers stressed the importance of freedom of speech on the Internet and social media on the eve of G8 meetings in Deauville to discuss Internet controls. The New York Times today reported that G8 leaders intend to call for stronger Internet regulation. Presenters include representatives of leading social media companies…
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