Some French newspapers are still pursuing their campaign about diamonds and other valuable presents which President Valery Giscard D'Estaing is said to have received from the ex-Emperor Bokassa of the Central African Empire.
Some French newspapers are still pursuing their campaign about diamonds and other valuable presents which President Valery Giscard D'Estaing is said to have received from the ex-Emperor Bokassa of the Central African Empire. Two weekly publications, 'Minute' and 'Le Canard Enchaine' have returned to the attack in the past week, in spite of the statements made by the President recently on French television.
SYNOPSIS: The "Canard Enchaine" made its first allegations two months ago--asserting that in 1973 , when he was Fiance Minister, President Giscard had received about one million francs worth of diamonds from the Emperor. It is a satirical paper, which makes its impact with the help of cartoons, and thrashes out fairly impartially as far as political parties are concerned.
In recent issues, the words 'Giscard' and 'diamonds' have appeared again and again. Its latest allegation is that Monsieur Giscard d'Estaing received a further gift from the Emperor after he had become President. I supports its claim by reproducing a letter from the Emperor to his Minister of State in July 1974, asking when the jewellery for the President would be ready.
'Minute', the other paper which has now taken up the story, has a more investigative style, and is generally regarded as very right-wing. In his television interview, President Giscard said it was not his policy to sue newspapers for attacking his honour; though President de Gaulle had done so more than a hundred times.
The 'Canard Enchaine' has also reported that the Paris headquarters of an African mission has recently received a valuable packet of gold and sliver ornaments from Madame Giscard for a charity sale.
Emperor Bokassa -- who always professed great affection for France -- was overthrown in September after allegations that he had ordered the torture and murder of schoolchildren. President Giscard, who received the Emperor at the Elysee Palace a year earlier, spoke generally in his television interview about gifts between Heads of State.
The President said that, as Head of State, he had given and received official gifts. All those given to him were taken to the Elysee Palace and kept there...unless they were either given to charity or sent to museums.