Newly Appointed French Minister Refuses to Resign After Rape Accusations

Damien Abad, France’s new minister for Solidarity and the Severely Handicapped, denied on Monday that he had raped two women, adding that he had no intention of resigning from the government. “Is the innocent man resigning? I don’t think so,” Abad told reporters.

On Sunday, Abbad made the same denial, following the accusations published by the website Mediapart in an article based on interviews with the women.

Mediapart reported the women on Saturday that Abad had forced them to have unwanted sexual relations with him. They said the actions took place in late 2010 and early 2011. Abad and Mediapart said one of the women filed a police complaint against Abad in 2017, and it was shut down without further action.

Abad joined the government formed on Friday after the re-election of President Emmanuel Macron. Asked to comment on the charges against Abad, Prime Minister Elizabeth Bourne said she was not aware of them when he joined the government.

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