Mitterrand to be French culture minister

Nephew of former French prez to replace Christine Albanel

PARIS -- France is getting ready to welcome a new cultural minister, with Frederic Mitterrand confirming rumors Tuesday on public TV network France 2 that he will replace cultural minister Christine Albanel.

The French government hasn't yet made an official announcement, but plans to make its final decision Wednesday.

The 62 year-old Mitterrand, nephew of former French president Francois Mitterrand, told France 2 that he'd accepted the position. He called his new position "an exciting task and an honor." He said he will serve as minister to current French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who served as minister when Mitterrand's uncle was president.

Mitterrand serves as director of the Villa Medicis in Rome, a position he took over in September. When reached for comment, the cultural ministry wasn't able to confirm the appointment until the final decision is made Wednesday, but French newspaper Le Point reported that Mitterrand had already organized a going-away party at La Villa Medicis as of Monday night. The French government will announce all of its ministerial positions Wednesday.
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