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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 January 2008, 05:05 GMT
Sarkozy says 'non' to France 24
President Sarkozy
President Sarkozy said a French channel can only speak French
President Nicolas Sarkozy has said his country will stop broadcasting its English- language 24-hour news channel, France 24.

The French premier has called for a French-only network to replace it.

"With taxpayers' money, I am not prepared to broadcast a channel that does not speak French," he said.

Launched in December 2006 by Mr Sarkozy's predecessor, Jacques Chirac, France 24 now broadcasts around the world in French, English and Arabic.

The channel aimed to challenge the dominance of English-language market-leaders BBC World and CNN.

French connections

Mr Sarkozy said a new channel, France Monde, would be created as fast as possible to replace France 24.

The new channel will pull together the resources of France 24, TV Cinq television and Radio France Internationale, to provide a more French perspective to global viewers.

Mr Sarkozy said details of the new organisation "remained open to debate" but that "a public channel, France Monde... can only speak French".

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