French prez's secret agents forget to pack guns on Brazil trip
London, June 28 (ANI): Elite secret agents, who were sent to protect France's new president Francois Hollande at a major overseas meeting, forgot to pack their guns, it has been revealed.
In scenes straight out of an Inspector Clouseau film, highly-trained members of the GSPR (Security Group of the Presidency of the Republic) thought they had placed their weapons in secure suitcases when they travelled to Rio Earth summit last week.
In fact there had been an oversight, and when the unit's luggage was inspected in Brazil in accordance with diplomatic protocol the guns were not there, the Daily Mail reported.
This meant that the agents wearing sunglasses and earpieces around Hollande would have been brandishing "pretend" guns in their shoulder holsters.
Brazil has some of the worst gun crime figures in the world, meaning the French service personnel would have felt particularly vulnerable.
"As far as anyone can remember, this was the first time this has happened," one officer told the French investigative weekly Le Canard Enchaine, which in turn suggested that the agents were "ready to fight with their bare hands."
There were few jokes back at the Elysee Palace in Paris, however. When the diplomatic party including Hollande were safely back in France, the agent responsible for the fiasco was duly sacked.
The President of France is widely considered to be the second most powerful executive position in the world after the American President.
There have been numerous attempts to assassinate the holder of the job in recent years, with the GSPR set up in 1983 to give him maximum protection.
Following an attempted bomb attack on Jacques Chirac in 2002 the number of officers in the unit was increased to 60, and all are firearms specialists.
One of Hollande's first acts on taking office in May was to increase the number of women in the GSPR, including appointing a female head - the first in its history. (ANI)
Read More: France | French Guiana | French Polynesia | Brazil | Central African Republic | Czech Republic | Mail | A.g.office | Srp Group Area Tso Nadiad | Srp Group I | Penha De France | India Security Press | Palace Guttahalli | Madras Presidency College Po | Madurai Palace | Devakottai Palace | Kochi Palace | Republic Veng | Hotel Republic | Francois Hollande
TRAGIC ACCIDENT IN SIKAR KILLS SIX PEOPLE
May 19, 2013 at 2:39 PM
IF SINGH IS HONEST PM, HOW WILL A CORRUPT PM BE, ASKS RAMDEV
May 19, 2013 at 2:38 PM
Hundreds run for women safety in New Delhi
May 19, 2013 at 1:26 PM