France's Valls regrets soccer trip, to pay for children's flights

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 11, 2015 2:29 AM

PARIS (Reuters) - French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said on Thursday he regretted last week's decision to fly with his children to Berlin for a soccer match in a government aircraft and promised to reimburse their flights.

In a bid to end a political row over what he said was predominantly a government business trip, Valls said "if it was to come up again, I would not do it, and to remove any ambiguity, any doubt, I will take on the cost of the trip for my two children, of 2,500 euros."

Valls was speaking on French TV during a visit to French overseas territory of La Reunion.

Valls, a longstanding Barcelona fan, traveled to Berlin to watch the Spanish club play in Saturday's Champions League final at the invitation of Michel Platini, head of the European soccer body UEFA.

(Reporting by Andrew Callus; Editing by Ingrid Melander)