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New government: who's in and out

François Fillon remains prime minister, leading a smaller government ahead of the 2012 election campaign

NICOLAS Sarkozy surprised his colleagues and the media by pushing through a government reshuffle over the weekend, with 16 people leaving, nine joining and François Fillon staying on as prime minister.

The president rushed back early from the G20 summit in South Korea, missing the closing dinner, to get to work on building a new government to prepare for the 2012 election campaign.

The Elysée palace issued a brief statement on Saturday evening, announcing that the government had resigned ahead of the reshuffle.

Details of the moves trickled out yesterday as Fillon worked to build a new government, and the full list was confirmed yesterday evening.

The new government is smaller than before, with a number of jobs merged.

Among those leaving are Eric Woerth, the labour minister who has been caught up in the Bettencourt scandal in recent months, and foreign secretary Bernard Kouchner.

Jean-Louis Borloo, who until recently was tipped as a potential prime minister, refused a place in the new government. The role of ecology minister is now taken by Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet.

Michèle Alliot-Marie, who was also tipped for the PM's job, has been named foreign secretary.

The job of immigration and national identity minister has been dropped. Interior minister Brice Hortefeux will take on additional responsibility for these areas.

Budget minister François Baroin takes on the additional role of government spokesman, a job previously held by Luc Chatel, who remains as education minister.

Former immigration minister Eric Besson moves to industry and also becomes responsible for the digital economy and energy.

Bordeaux mayor and ex-prime minister Alain Juppé is back in the government as defence minister.

Who's in:
Alain Juppé (defence)
Xavier Bertrand (work)
Marie-Anne Montchamp (social cohesion)
Frédéric Lefebvre (commerce)
Maurice Leroy (towns)
Thierry Mariani (transport)
Jeannette Bougrab (youth and charity work)
Patrick Ollier (parliamentary relations)
Philippe Richert (regions)

Who's out:
Eric Woerth (work)
Anne-Marie Idrac (external commerce)
Dominique Bussereau (transport)
Hervé Novelli (commerce)
Hubert Falco (veterans)
Alain Marleix (local government)
Patrick Devedjian (economic recovery)
Rama Yade (sport)
Jean-Louis Borloo (ecology)
Bernard Kouchner (foreign affairs)
Christian Estrosi (industry)
Hervé Morin (defence)
Fadela Amara (towns)
Jean-Marie Bockel (junior justice secretary)
Valérie Letard (green technology and climate change)
Marc-Philippe Daubresse (youth)

Who's moved:
Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet (ecology)
Eric Besson (industry)
Nora Berra (health)
Roselyne Bachelot (solidarity)
Michèle Alliot-Marie (foreign affairs)
Laurent Wauquiez (European affairs)
Henri de Raincourt (cooperation)
Chantal Jouanno (sport)
Michel Mercier (justice)
Nadine Morano (training and professional development)
Georges Tron (public services)

François Fillon (prime minister)
Christine Lagarde (economy/finance)
François Baroin (budget)
Luc Chatel (education)
Valérie Pécresse (higher education)
Frédéric Mitterrand (culture)
Bruno Le Maire (agriculture)
Marie-Luce Penchard (overseas territories)
Brice Hortefeux (interior minister, now also immigration)

François Fillon. Photo: Marie-Lan Nguyen

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