Charles Pasqua

Last updated

Charles Pasqua
Charles Pasqua.jpg
Minister of the Interior
In office
29 March 1993 11 May 1995
President François Mitterrand
Prime Minister Édouard Balladur
Preceded by Paul Quilès
Succeeded by Jean-Louis Debré
In office
20 March 1986 10 May 1988
President François Mitterrand
Prime Minister Jacques Chirac
Preceded by Pierre Joxe
Succeeded by Pierre Joxe
Personal details
Born(1927-04-18)18 April 1927
Grasse, France
Died29 June 2015(2015-06-29) (aged 88)
Suresnes, France
Political party Rally for France
Other political
Rally of the French People
Union for the New Republic
Union of Democrats for the Republic
Rally for the Republic
Spouse(s)Jeanne Joly (1947-2015)
Children Pierre-Philippe Pasqua (1948-2015)

Charles Pasqua (18 April 1927 – 29 June 2015) was a French businessman and Gaullist politician. He was Interior Minister from 1986 to 1988, under Jacques Chirac's cohabitation government, and also from 1993 to 1995, under the government of Edouard Balladur.

Jacques Chirac French statesman and official

Jacques René Chirac is a French politician who served as President of France and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra from 1995 to 2007. Chirac previously was Prime Minister of France from 1974 to 1976 and from 1986 to 1988, as well as Mayor of Paris from 1977 to 1995.


Early life and family background

Pasqua was born on 18 April 1927 in Grasse, Alpes-Maritimes. [1] [2] His paternal grandfather was a shepherd from Casevecchie, Corsica [3] [4] and he could speak Corsican fluently. [5] As of 1987, his cousin served as the Mayor of Casevecchie. [6]

Grasse Subprefecture and commune in Provence-Alpes-Côte dAzur, France

Grasse is a commune in the Alpes-Maritimes department, on the French Riviera.

Casevecchie Commune in Corsica, France

Casevecchie is a commune in the Haute-Corse department of France on the island of Corsica.

Corsica Island in the Mediterranean, also a region and a department of France

Corsica is an island in the Mediterranean Sea and one of the 18 regions of France. It is located southeast of the French mainland and west of the Italian Peninsula, with the nearest land mass being the Italian island of Sardinia to the immediate south. A single chain of mountains makes up two-thirds of the island.

During World War II, Pasqua joined the French Resistance at the age of sixteen. [3] [7]

World War II 1939–1945 global war

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.

French Resistance collection of French resistance movements that fought against the Nazi German occupation of France and against the collaborationist Vichy régime

The French Resistance was the collection of French movements that fought against the Nazi German occupation of France and the collaborationist Vichy régime during the Second World War. Resistance cells were small groups of armed men and women, who, in addition to their guerrilla warfare activities, were also publishers of underground newspapers, providers of first-hand intelligence information, and maintainers of escape networks that helped Allied soldiers and airmen trapped behind enemy lines. The men and women of the Resistance came from all economic levels and political leanings of French society, including émigrés, academics, students, aristocrats, conservative Roman Catholics, and also citizens from the ranks of liberals, anarchists and communists.

Pasqua received his Baccalauréat, followed by a degree in Law. [5]

Baccalauréat French diploma

The baccalauréat, often known in France colloquially as bac, is an academic qualification that French students are required to take to graduate high school. Introduced by Napoleon I in 1808, it is the main diploma that is required to pursue university studies.

Business career

From 1952 to 1971 he worked for Ricard, a producer of alcoholic beverages (most notably pastis), starting as a salesman. [5] [8]

Pernod Ricard French company that produces distilled beverages

Pernod Ricard is a French company that produces alcoholic beverages. The company's eponymous products, Pernod Anise and Ricard Pastis, are both anise-flavoured pastis apéritifs and are often referred to simply as Pernod or Ricard. The company also produces several other types of pastis. It is the world’s second-largest wine and spirits seller.

Pastis anise-flavored liqueur and apéritif from France

Pastis is an anise-flavoured spirit and apéritif from France, typically containing less than 100 g/l sugar and 40–45% ABV.

In 1971, Pasqua founded Euralim, also known as Europe-Alimentation, an importer of Americano, a cocktail made by the Italian company Gancia. [9]

Americano (cocktail) cocktail composed of Campari, sweet vermouth, and club soda

The Americano is an IBA official cocktail composed of Campari, sweet vermouth, and club soda. The cocktail was first served in creator Gaspare Campari's bar, Caffè Campari, in the 1860s. It was originally known as the "Milano-Torino" because of its ingredients: Campari, the bitter liqueur, is from Milan (Milano) and Punt e Mes, the vermouth, is from Turin (Torino).

Gancia Italian vinery established in 1850

Gancia is an Italian wine-making company. It was founded in 1850 by Carlo Gancia in Turin using Piedmont grape, The company is best known for its Gancia Aperitivo Originale. Like other Italian alcoholic beverages, the American Gancia is consumed massively in Argentina.


In 1947, he helped create the section of the Gaullist Party RPF movement for the Alpes-Maritimes. [5] With Jacques Foccart and Achille Peretti, he was the co-founder of the Service d'Action Civique (SAC) in 1959 to counter the terrorist actions of the OAS during the Algerian War of Independence (1954–1962). [5] The SAC would be charged with the underground actions of the Gaullist movement and participated in the organization of the 30 May 1968 Gaullist counter-demonstration. [5] [10]

From 1968 to 1973, he was deputy to the French National Assembly for the Hauts-de-Seine département for the UDR party, of which he was a leading member from 1974 to 1976. [5] He helped Jacques Chirac to take the lead of the party and participated in its transformation into the Rally for the Republic (RPR). Counsellor of Jacques Chirac alongside Marie-France Garaud, he was in charge of the organisation of Chirac's campaign for the 1981 presidential election, won by the candidate of the Socialist Party (PS), François Mitterrand (1981–1995). As such, he is considered to be Chirac's mentor in politics. [5]

From 1981 to 1986 he was senator for the Hauts-de-Seine, then president of the RPR group in the Senate. [1] From 1986 to 1988 he was Interior Minister (in charge of law enforcement). [7] In 1992, he called a vote against the ratification of the Maastricht Treaty. [7] He became Interior Minister again from 1993 to 1995, [7] and supported the candidacy of Edouard Balladur at the 1995 presidential election. He is mostly remembered for having pushed a series of anti-immigration laws (lois Pasqua), and for his declaration "we will terrorize the terrorists." [5] [10]

Pasqua headed the Rally for France (RPF), a sovereigntist (Eurosceptic) party, for a while in association with Philippe de Villiers. [5] At the 1999 European Parliament election, their list got ahead of the RPR list. He served as the President of the General Council of the Hauts-de-Seine from 1988 to 2004. [8] In 2004, he was elected senator by an electoral college.

In 2008, Pasqua was convicted of illegal lobbying in the Mitterrand–Pasqua affair during his time serving as French Interior Minister. He was sentenced to a one-year jail term. [11]

In 2005, a US Senate report accused him, along with the British Respect politician George Galloway, of receiving the right to buy oil under the UN's oil-for-food scheme. [12] Pasqua denied the charges and pointed out that he never met Saddam Hussein, had never been to Iraq, and never cultivated any political ties with that country. In a lengthy written rebuttal to the Senate report, Charles Pasqua pointed out further that since the oil vouchers were lifted by a legal entity incorporated in a European country, it should be relatively easy for investigators to uncover the masterminds behind the fraud instead of making accusations based on "sensational" press articles. [13]

Personal life and death

He was married to Jeanne Joly, from Quebec, Canada. [5] They had a son, Pierre-Philippe Pasqua, who predeceased him, dying in February 2015. [3] [5]

He died of a heart attack on 29 June 2015 at the Foch Hospital in Suresnes, near Paris. [7] [14]

Related Research Articles

Hauts-de-Seine Department of France in Île-de-France

Hauts-de-Seine is a department of France located in the region of Île-de-France. A part of the Grand Paris, it covers the western inner suburbs of Paris. With a population of 1,603,268 as of 2016 and a total area of 176 square kilometres, it is the second-most highly densely populated department of France. Hauts-de-Seine is best known for containing the modern office, theatre and shopping complex La Défense. Its inhabitants are called Altoséquanais.

Rally for the Republic French political party

The Rally for the Republic, was a Gaullist and conservative political party in France. Originating from the Union of Democrats for the Republic (UDR), it was founded by Jacques Chirac in 1976 and presented itself as the heir of Gaullist politics. On 21 September 2002, the RPR was merged into the Union for the Presidential Majority, later renamed the Union for a Popular Movement (UMP).

Union for French Democracy political party

The Union for French Democracy was a centre-right political party in France. It was founded in 1978 as an electoral alliance to support President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing in order to counterbalance the Gaullist preponderance over the political right in France. This name was chosen due to the title of Giscard d'Estaing's 1976 book, Démocratie Française. The party brought together Christian democrats, liberals and radicals, and non-Gaullist conservatives, and described itself as centrist.

In France, the Gaullist Party is usually used to refer to the largest party professing to be Gaullist. Gaullism claim to transcend the left-right divide but in practice the current Gaullist party is the centre-right Republicans.

Alain Juppé French statesman

Alain Marie Juppé is a French politician, and a member of The Republicans. He was Prime Minister of France from 1995 to 1997 under President Jacques Chirac, during which period he faced major strikes that paralyzed the country, and became very unpopular. He left office after the victory of the left in the snap 1997 elections. He had previously served as Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1993 to 1995, and as Minister of the Budget and Spokesman for the Government from 1986 to 1988. He was President of the political party Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) from 2002 to 2004 and mayor of Bordeaux from 1995 to 2004.

Édouard Balladur French politician

Édouard Balladur is a French politician who served as Prime Minister of France under François Mitterrand from 29 March 1993 to 10 May 1995. He unsuccessfully ran for president in the 1995 French presidential election, coming in third place. At age 90, Balladur is currently the oldest living former French Prime Minister.

1995 French presidential election

Presidential elections took place in France on 23 April and 7 May 1995, to elect the fifth president of the Fifth Republic.

Jacques Chaban-Delmas French Gaullist politician

Jacques Chaban-Delmas was a French Gaullist politician. He served as Prime Minister under Georges Pompidou from 1969 to 1972. He was the Mayor of Bordeaux from 1947 to 1995 and a deputy for the Gironde département.

Philippe Séguin French politician

Philippe Séguin was a French political figure who was President of the National Assembly from 1993 to 1997 and President of the Cour des Comptes of France from 2004 to 2010.

Rally for France political party

The Rally for France is a political party in France of the right. It was founded in 1999 by the Gaullist and former Interior Minister Charles Pasqua, then allied with Philippe de Villiers (ex-UDF). The RPF aims to fight against globalisation and European federalism. The party is opposed to further European integration. The acronym RPF was an explicit nod to Charles de Gaulle's Rassemblement du Peuple Français.

Patrick Devedjian French politician

Patrick Devedjian is a French politician of the Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) party. A close adviser of Nicolas Sarkozy since the 1990s, he was Minister under the Prime Minister in charge of the Implementation of the Recovery Plan, a special ministerial post created for two years after the global financial crisis of 2008, since December 2008. He is of Armenian descent.

The SAC, officially created in January 1960, was a Gaullist militia founded by Jacques Foccart, Charles de Gaulle's chief adviser for African matters, and Pierre Debizet, a former Resistant and official director of the group. Important members included Charles Pasqua, part of the Gaullist movement and known as Jacques Chirac's mentor, Etienne Léandri, a friend of Pasqua, Robert Pandraud or Christian Fouchet. The predecessor of the SAC was the service of order of the Rassemblement du Peuple Français (RPF) Gaullist party. The SAC was dissolved in 1982 under François Mitterrand's government, after a particularly gruesome multiple murder triggered by internal rivalries.

Michel Roussin was the chief of staff of Alexandre de Marenches, who directed the SDECE French secret service until the May 1981 election of François Mitterrand as President of France. Michel Roussin has also been chief of staff of Jacques Chirac when he was mayor of Paris and also when he was prime minister.

1993 French legislative election

French legislative elections took place on 21 and 28 March 1993 to elect the tenth National Assembly of the Fifth Republic.

1986 French legislative election

The French legislative elections took place on 16 March 1986 to elect the eighth National Assembly of the Fifth Republic. Contrary to other legislative elections of the Fifth Republic, the electoral system used was that of party-list proportional representation.

The Mitterrand–Pasqua affair, also known informally as Angolagate, was an international political scandal over the secret sale and shipment of arms from Central Europe to the government of Angola by the Government of France in the 1990s. The scandal has been tied to several prominent figures in French politics.

1999 European Parliament election in France

On 13 June 1999 the fifth direct elections to the European Parliament were held in the France. Once again, abstention was very high for this type of election- only 47% of eligible voters voted. The election was also the first French European election to be won by the Socialist Party (PS).

Claude Guéant French politician and official

Claude Guéant is a French civil servant. The former Chief of Staff to Nicolas Sarkozy, he served as Minister of the Interior from 27 February 2011 until 15 May 2012. He is a member of the conservative Union for a Popular Movement (UMP).

François Asselineau French politician and official

François Asselineau is a French politician and an Inspector General for finances.


  1. 1 2 French Senate: Charles Pasqua
  2. L'ancien ministre Charles Pasqua est mort à l'âge de 88 ans, Libération, June 29, 2015
  3. 1 2 3 Mort de Charles Pasqua, gaulliste et ancien premier flic de France Archived 23 July 2015 at the Wayback Machine , Corse Matin, June 30, 2015
  4. Le vieux lion est mort, Corse Matin, June 30, 2015
  5. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Raphaëlle Bacqué, Mort de Charles Pasqua, un homme qui faisait « peur et rire tout à la fois », Le Monde, June 29, 2015
  6. Pasqua en Corse, Institut national de l'audiovisuel, June 14, 1987
  7. 1 2 3 4 5 Reuters, French politician Charles Pasqua dies of a heart attack, The Daily Mail, June 29, 2015
  8. 1 2 The Power Broker in France's Election / Interior Minister Pasqua embodies nation's social divide, The San Francisco Chronicle, 21 April 1995
  9. Quand les RG scrutaient Pasqua chez Ricard, Le Nouvel Observateur, January 23, 2002
  10. 1 2 Gilles Bresson, Un souverainiste déchu par sa droite, Libération, January 11, 2001
  12. US Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs: "Report on oil allocations granted to Charles Pasqua & George Galloway", BBC, 12 May 2005
  13. "Angolagate : condamné à un an ferme, Pasqua riposte". Le Figaro. Retrieved 30 September 2014.
  14. Said Mahrane, Charles Pasqua est décédé des suites d'un accident cardiaque, Le Point, June 29, 2015
Political offices
Preceded by
Pierre Joxe
Minister of the Interior
Succeeded by
Pierre Joxe
Preceded by
Paul Quilès
Minister of the Interior
Succeeded by
Jean-Louis Debré