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Spanish PM Replaces Two Ministers

July 10, 2002

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MADRID, Spain (AP) _ Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar changed his foreign and interior ministers Tuesday as part of his biggest cabinet reshuffle since taking office in 1996.

Aznar named Ana Palacio to replace outgoing Foreign Minister Josep Pique and former Justice Minister Angel Acebes as the new interior minister, which handles state security.

Ex-Interior Minister Mariano Rajoy remains as deputy premier along with economy minister Rodrigo Rato. Rajoy also takes on the presidency and government spokesman portfolios.

In all, six ministers were removed from the Cabinet, five new names were brought in and three others switched portfolios.

Aznar, who has yet to explain the changes, presented the new list Tuesday afternoon to King Juan Carlos. It was not immediately known when the new ministers would be sworn in.

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