A former French foreign minister, 92-year-old Roland Dumas, has refused to apologize for comments he made last weekend that current French Prime Minister Manuel Valls is “probably influenced” by his Jewish wife.
“Everyone knows that he is married to someone… someone very good who has an influence on him,” Dumas said in an interview with the BFMTV television channel, as translated by the International Business Times.
Dumas was then asked if he believes that Valls is under Jewish influence, to which he responded, “Probably, I think so.”
“Of course [he is influenced by his wife]. Why not?” he added.
The French Socialist party, of which Dumas was a member, called the former foreign minister’s comments “unworthy of a Socialist decorated by the Republic.”
But in a subsequent interview with France 24, Dumas refused to apologize and stood by his earlier comments, saying that Valls “has personal alliances that mean he has prejudices.”
Valls is married to Jewish businesswoman and violinist Anne Gravoin. He has also been a vocal critic of the rising anti-Semitism in France. In the wake of the Islamist terror attack at a kosher grocery store in Paris last month, which killed four Jewish shoppers, Valls gave a passionate speech at the French parliament in which he said the country has not “shown enough outrage” about anti-Semitism.