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French president's reported mistress denied cultural post

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French President Francois Hollande leaves after his annual news conference, Tuesday, Jan.14, 2014 at the Elysee Palace in Paris. Hollande is promising to cut 50 billion euros in public spending over 2015-2017 to try to improve the indebted economy. Hollande, a Socialist, came to office in 2012 on pledges to avoid the painful austerity measures carried out by neighboring Spain and Italy. But France‚Äôs economy has suffered two recessions in recent years and growth is forecast at an anemic 0.2 percent in 2013. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena) (The Associated Press)

France's Culture Ministry has denied an actress a coveted spot at a prestigious French cultural institution over reports that she's having an affair with the president.

An official with the ministry says Julie Gayet was nominated for the jury at the Villa Medicis, a French state-owned institution in Rome. Culture Minister Aurelie Filippetti rejected the nomination Wednesday, the official said, without giving a reason. The official was not authorized to be publicly named.

The decision came a day after French President Francois Hollande's news conference where he admitted to problems in his love life but refused to comment on the affair.

Hollande's first lady, journalist Valerie Trierweiler, has been hospitalized since Friday, when the tabloid magazine Closer published photos it said proved Hollande's liaison with Gayet.