French foreign minister offered resignation: report

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French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner offered his resignation in August, accusing presidential advisers of inflicting "humiliations" on him, a magazine reported Wednesday.

The respected left-wing weekly news magazine Le Nouvel Observateur quoted small snippets of the handwritten letter which it said was handed personally by Kouchner to Sarkozy in August and shown to the magazine by a trusted source.

Kouchner, 70, an opposition Socialist with wide overseas experience who was drafted into Sarkozy's new right-wing government in 2007, said some of Sarkozy's advisors had inflicted unspecified "humiliations" on him.

He also criticised the government's recent drive to toughen its security policies. Kouchner had already expressed unease about Sarkozy's crackdown on Roma minorities which earned the president wide criticism this summer.

Foreign ministry sources say Kouchner is likely to be replaced in a ministerial reshuffle that Sarkozy plans in November.

Presidential spokespeople were not immediately available to comment on the report, printed in Thursday's edition of the magazine.

© 2010 AFP

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