In late 2006, Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi offered nearly $66 million, or 50 million euros, to support the 2007 campaign of Nicolas Sarkozy, France’s current president who is now facing almost certain defeat in a May 6 runoff vote, according to the investigative journalist website Mediapart.
The revelation, purportedly in an official Libyan document, comes a month after Sarkozy publicly rejected claims that his 2007 campaign had accepted funding from Gaddafi — with whom he had publicly carried on amicable relations even before emphatically winning the presidency five years ago.
An image of the Arab-language memo cited by Mediapart can be viewed here
According to the evening newspaper Le Monde, a Sarkozy spokeswoman today denounced the report as a diversionary tactic created by the campaign of Socialist rival François Hollande, the projected winner on May 6.
The Dec 10, 2006 document is signed by Moussa Koussa, Gaddafi’s foreign intelligence chief, and, according to a French translation, reads in part:
“Reference is made by the liaison office of the people’s general committee to the approval for supporting the electoral campaign of the candidate in the presidential elections, Mr. Nicolas Sarkozy, at an amount valued at 50 million euros…”
Mr. Koussa transmits the confirmed “agreement in principle on the above-referenced subject.” But the note does not indicate whether the funds were ever transferred.
At contemporary rates, that amount would have equaled about $66 million. The Sarkozy campaign officially spent only 20 million euros, or about $26.4 million.
Polls forecast that Sarkozy will lose the May 6 election to Hollande by a margin of about 10 points.
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Also, the sudden obsession Sarkozy had with Lybia in March 2011 seemed strange. We know that he always act hastily but... to the point to bypass his minister of foreign affairs ?