News / Europe

Strauss-Kahn: 'Regrets' Sex with NY Hotel Maid, No Violence Involved

Dominique Strauss-Kahn answers questions during an interview with French TV station TF1.
Dominique Strauss-Kahn answers questions during an interview with French TV station TF1.
Lisa Bryant

Former International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn has again denied accusations that he assaulted a hotel chamber maid in New York, but offered his regrets at what he described as inappropriate behavior.  

On French television Sunday night, Dominique Strauss-Kahn said his encounter with New York hotel maid Nafissatou Diallo did not include violence.

Strauss-Kahn said that he behaved inappropriately and committed an error that he will regret the rest of his life.  He said he had let down his family, his friends and the French people.  The former IMF chief was widely considered a top contender in France's presidential election next year, until his career was derailed by rape charges in May.

Strauss-Kahn said he was not proud of his actions with Diallo.  But saying he cited the New York prosecutor's report, Strauss-Kahn added that the Guinean maid lied throughout the judicial process that made international headlines.  New York prosecutors dropped the case in August.  Strauss-Kahn's lawyers have not denied that sexual relations took place, but they argue that they were consensual.

The former IMF chief said he felt abused by the U.S. justice system and that he had been humiliated and attacked before he could speak in his defense.

Millions of French viewers tuned in to the first interview Strauss-Kahn has given since returning to France earlier this month.  His wife is a friend of the TF1 television journalist Claire Chazal, who conducted the interview.

Strauss-Kahn still faces a civil case brought by Diallo along with allegations of attempted rape in France filed by writer Tristane Banon.  Strauss-Kahn has filed a countersuit against Banon alleging defamation of character.

Strauss-Kahn called Banon's accusations imaginary.  As with Diallo, he denied any violence during his encounter with her, which took place nearly a decade ago.

The twin scandals have sparked intense debate in France about gender equality and sexual harassment in the workplace.  Strauss-Kahn resigned as IMF chief in May and was replaced by former French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde, who is the institution's first female head.  During his television appearance, Strauss-Kahn insisted that he respects women.  He denied using his powerful position to obtain sexual favors.

Strauss-Kahn ruled out playing a political role in France in the immediate future.  Regarding the financial crisis buffeting Europe, the former IMF chief said he is interested in working on economic and immigration issues in the future.

A public opinion poll published Sunday in the weekly Journal du Dimanche found that a majority of French hope Strauss-Kahn will retire from political life.

You May Like

Turbulent Transition Imperils Tunisia’s Arab Spring Gains

Critics say new anti-terrorism laws worsen Tunisia's situation while others put faith in country’s vibrant civil organizations, women’s movement More

Burundi’s Political Crisis May Become Humanitarian One

United Nations aid agencies issue warning as deadly violence sends tens of thousands fleeing More

Yemenis Adjust to Life Under Houthi Rule

Locals want warring parties to strike deal to stop bloodletting before deciding how country is governed More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fairi
X
Brian Padden
May 29, 2015 1:27 PM
With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs