Gallic culture minister stays

Colonna to depart CNC for political office

PARIS — Culture Minister Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres will stay put in the government reshuffle following Gaul’s “no” vote on the European Constitution.

However, the Centre National de la Cinematographie, (CNC), France’s powerful film council, is to lose its topper of less than a year with the appointment of Catherine Colonna as France’s new minister for European affairs.

Colonna, representative for President Jacques Chirac from 1995 to 2004, has never held political office before.

Gaul’s freshman Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin announced his new government late on Thursday, as President Chirac fought to recover from the political fallout of Sunday’s “no” vote.

The referendum partly repped voter dissatisfaction with Chirac and his previous government’s failure to address 10% unemployment and poverty among France’s lowest paid workers.

Villepin is known Stateside as the voice of French opposition to the Iraq war when he was Gaul’s foreign minister.

— Alison James

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