Villepin presents new French government

2nd June 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 2 (AFP) - New French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin unveiled his government on Thursday, allowing rival Nicolas Sarkozy back into the administration as interior minister and his number two.

PARIS, June 2 (AFP) - New French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin unveiled his government on Thursday, allowing rival Nicolas Sarkozy back into the administration as interior minister and his number two. 

The ambitious 50-year-old Sarkozy will also retain his position as head of President Jacques Chirac's ruling centre-right Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) party.  

Chirac appointed Villepin, a 51-year-old loyal lieutenant, to the prime minister's office on Tuesday amid the political fallout after French voters decisively rejected the EU constitution in a referendum.  

Many key ministers remained in place, including Defence Minister Michele Alliot-Marie, Finance Minister Thierry Breton and Social Affairs Minister Jean-Louis Borloo.  

But Philippe Douste Blazy, health minister in the outgoing government of Jean-Pierre Raffarin, was named foreign minister, replacing Michel Barnier.  

Gilles de Robien, the former transport minister, was appointed education minister, replacing Francois Fillon, while Pascal Clement is the new justice minister instead of Dominique Perben.

 

© AFP

Subject: French News

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