French actress Julie Gayet has initiated a privacy suit against Closer magazine over its report that she was having an affair with President Francois Hollande.

Gayet is seeking 50,000 euros ($68,140) in damages and 4,000 euros in legal costs from the magazine over a report she claims breached France's privacy legislation, the magazine said on Thursday.

If she wins, Closer will have to publish the legal verdict on its cover page.

Hollande rules out action 

At a press conference on Tuesday, Hollande expressed his "total indignation" over Closer's publication of photos that the magazine said showed him and Gayet arriving separately for secret trysts at a borrowed flat yards from the presidential Elysee Palace.

But the Socialist leader ruled out legal action on his own behalf, saying that would not be appropriate given that he himself enjoys immunity from any legal action.

Even if Closer is forced to pay Gayet the maximum amount she has claimed, the magazine's story will probably still be a money earner.

Earlier this week, it said it was on track to sell 600,000 copies of its edition with the Hollande/Gayet pictures, twice its usual circulation.

The magazine has promised another series of pictures and fresh revelations about the affair in its next edition, which will be available on Friday.

Source: AFP