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Profumo affair's Christine Keeler has passed away aged 75

Profumo affair's Christine Keeler has passed away aged 75

She was one of the most iconic figures of the 20th century, who brought down a prime minister amid the notorious Profumo affair, but Christine Keeler died this week in relative penury.

Her son, Seymour Platt, revealed that she had died on Monday in hospital near Farnborough.

In the aftermath of that controversy which rocked British politics and played a role in the fall of Harold Macmillan's Government, Ms Keeler married twice and had two sons: James from her first marriage and Seymour from her second.

She was linked to Commander Eugene Ivanov, a Soviet naval attaché at the Russian Embassy in London - sparking concerns over national security.

Eventually, after more newspaper stories emerged, he admitted lying to the house, and resigned from the cabinet and the Commons.

She became famous for an affair she had with Tory cabinet minister John Profumo which forced him to resign in 1963.

The black-and-white photograph of a naked Keeler sitting astride an Arne Jacobsen chair remains the defining image of the lurid scandal that has been retold several times on screen and stage, including as a musical.

"There was a lot of good around Chris's rather tragic life, because there was a family around her that loved her", Platt was quoted as saying.

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"I don't think she ever got away from it - that was a tragedy".

It even added an expression to the British lexicon.

"Well, he would, wouldn't he?", responded Mandy Rice-Davies.

"She said what she thought", he continued.

In later life, Keeler had regrets about how the scandal unfolded and said she had been a victim.

"I wish to share some sad news", he wrote.

Born in Uxbridge, Middlesex, and raised by her mother and stepfather, Ms Keeler was romantically involved with a Soviet military officer at the same time as her 1960s liaison with Profumo, who was at the time the Secretary of State for War.


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