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SARKOZY OFFERS AID PLAN TO REVIVE SLUMS

FRANCE

French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Friday unveiled an ambitious plan to revitalize the country's riot-scarred suburban slums with new housing, education and jobs programs and tougher police enforcement, saying that France has to eradicate discrimination and provide better security for all of its citizens. "Whatever your origin, whatever name you have, whatever the color of your skin, wherever you live - if you work, you can gain access to every position of responsibility, including the very highest," he said in a speech. Sarkozy himself has Hungarian immigrant roots.

Elsewhere

Sudan: The military said it bombed three towns in West Darfur while striking at rebel forces Friday. The rebels denied any of their fighters were in the towns and said about 200 people were killed. It was impossible to verify either claim.

Austria: At least 11 people were killed when a fire engulfed a home for the elderly in the town of Egg in western Austria on Friday, the government said.

Kenya: Rival political parties moved toward an agreement to share power, the chief mediator said Friday, raising hopes for a breakthrough in the postelection crisis that has left more than 1,000 people dead.

Israel: The government began reducing the amount of electricity it sells to the Gaza Strip as part of sanctions for continued rocket fire, officials said Friday. In response, militants fired more rockets at Israel.

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