‘This is hell for me’: Blanchet says allegations of sexual misconduct untrue

Click to play video: '‘This is hell for me’: Blanchet denies sexual misconduct allegations'
‘This is hell for me’: Blanchet denies sexual misconduct allegations
Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves Francois-Blanchet denied on Sunday that allegations of sexual misconduct raised in a Facebook post earlier in the week are true. Blanchet said he has “no idea” who wrote the post or what the intention is behind the allegation – Jul 19, 2020

Bloc Quebecois leader, Yves-Francois Blanchet has spoken out against allegations of sexual misconduct dating back to 1999 that arose earlier this week, saying they are untrue and are libellous.

Speaking at a press conference Sunday afternoon, Blanchet said the allegation “goes completely against everything I am.”

“I have never acted the way that has been alleged, I have never done what was described in the Facebook post,” he said.

Blanchet said the allegations were “political” and “militant” and that he is the victim of libel.

“Imagine for just one moment the hell in which these people, these anonymous people have thrown you into,” he said. “It makes your blood run cold.”

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In a statement released earlier on Sunday, the Bloc Quebecois caucus said Blanchet is a man of “integrity,” and is “honest and determined to serve the interest of Quebecers.”

“We are convinced that the anonymous allegations made against him are false and we support him without hesitation,” the statement reads in French.

Click to play video: 'BQ leader Blanchet denies sexual misconduct allegations'
BQ leader Blanchet denies sexual misconduct allegations

The party said it is a “staunch defender of the legal society,” and has worked to “improve the living conditions of women and men in Quebec.”

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“This is what we were elected for and what we will continue to do with our leader, Yves-François Blanchet,” the statement said.

The allegations were posted anonymously on July 14 to a Facebook page called “Hyènes en jupons” — or “Hyenas in skirts.” The group describes itself as a feminist collective that aims for change through disruption.

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Global News does not know the identity of the accuser and has not been able to verify the claims in the post.

The post claims Blanchet tried to force himself on a woman in the washroom of a Montreal bar in 1999.

The post claims the alleged incident took place after a party celebrating the release of Canadian singer Isabelle Boulay’s album.

Asked by reporters if he was, in fact, at the album launch event, Blanchet said it is possible, but that the rest of the Facebook post is untrue.

“Is it likely that I was with Eric Lapointe that night for the launch of an album of Isabelle Boulay – yes,” he said. “But the rest is  pure fantasy and I am denying the allegations as described at this point.”

Blanchet said he would like an investigation into the Facebook post which he said is “defamatory,” and that the post must be withdrawn.

He said he has “no idea” who wrote the post or what the intention behind the allegation is.
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Blanchet has been the leader of the Bloc Quebecois since January of last year.

Asked if he should step down as party leader, Blanchet said doing so over “anonymous allegations” would be “unimaginable.”

“So my answer is very clear,” he said. “I am going to continue as leader of the Bloc and the caucus has unanimously supported this position.”

–With files from Global News’ Beatrice Britneff and The Canadian Press

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