Paris (ANTARA News/AFP) - French President Nicolas Sarkozy named former premier Alain Juppe as his new foreign minister Sunday, after Michele Alliot-Marie, tainted by her ties to the former Tunisian regime, resigned.

Juppe will be replaced as defence minister by Gerard Longuet, the leader of Sarkozy`s centre right party in the French Senate, the president announced in a brief televised address to the nation.

Sarkozy`s chief of staff, Claude Gueant, will become interior minister, charged with restoring the government`s reputation as tough on crime with a view to his leader`s expected 2012 relection bid. (*)

Editor: Kunto Wibisono
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