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Thursday, 17 February 2011

MAM voyage - a spoof on French foreign minister's "free" travels

Amid all the recent controversy surrounding the travel arrangements of the French foreign minister, Michèle Alliot-Marie, a spoof agency has gone online offering trips to dream destinations at truly unbelievable prices: in fact no price at all. apparently has some unreal bargains on its books.

Tabarka in Tunisia is knocked down from €1,299 to €0. And a similar great offer for Abou Simbel in Egypt sees prices slashed from €1,899 to €0.

Further bargains include Iran, Côte d'Ivoire and Burma - all at the ridiculously giveaway prices of...well you probably get the idea.

There's a testimonial from (among others) Michèle M. who says, "We had a fabulous time and thank you once again for the free upgrade during our stopover in Tunis."

And François F. (a nod to the French prime minister François Fillion who admitted having "accepted the hospitality" of former Eyptian president Hosni Mubarak while on holiday on the Nile at the New Year) writes, "Luxor, the Valley of the Kings, the magnificence of the Nile ... with MAM it's more than a trip. It's a state of mind"

The whole spoof is topped off with contact details which will put you in touch with the French foreign ministry.

The name MAM-voyage is, of course, a parody of the site of the French tour operator FRAM and at the same time a reference to Alliot-Marie, who is more commonly known in France as MAM.

And it perhaps comes as a welcome, light-hearted relief after the recent controversy surrounding one of France's most experienced and longest-serving government ministers.

MAM (the foreign minister that is) has faced opposition calls to resign ever since it was revealed that she used a private jet while on holiday with her partner Patrick Ollier, who is also a government minister, in Tunisia last December at the beginning of the country's uprising.

The 'plane the couple used was owned by a businessman, Aziz Miled who, it was alleged, had been close to the former Tunisian president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali.

Although she has since admitted that she "regretted her decision to accept the free flight", MAM has also defended Miled saying he had been a longtime friend and a "victim rather than an ally of Ben Ali."

Calls for her resignation have been renewed this week ever since the satirical weekly Le Canard Enchaîné revealed that MAM and Ollier weren't alone in Tunisia.

They were joined by Alliot-Marie's elderly parents who reportedly signed a property deal with Miled.

It was a deal which 92-year-old Bernard Marie, the foreign minister's father, told France 24 he had been advised to do because it "would be an investment in 2012."

Facing parliamentarians on Wednesday in the National Assembly, MAM hit back at those calling for her resignation and criticised the latest turn of events.

"You keep repeating lies in the hope that they'll turn into the truth," she said, stressing that the after trying to find something with which to tarnish her reputation, opponents had now decided to focus their attention on her parents.

"Have they done anything illegal? No. This campaign is shameful," she said.

"I just want to say quite simply how objectionable it is that you try to use my parents to attack me politically."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What sort of Banana Republic has France become? Shame shame shame!

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