- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 12, 2009

SANTIAGO, CHILE (AP) - President Michelle Bachelet is promoting her ambassador to the United States to the post of foreign minister while sending the current defense minister to Washington.

Bachelet says Ambassador Mariano Fernandez will replace Foreign Minister Alejandro Foxley. Both are Christian Democrats.

Fernandez is being replaced in Washington by socialist Jose Goni, who is leaving the Defense Ministry.

Goni’s socialist colleague Francisco Vidal will move to the Defense Ministry from his position as presidential spokesman. The new spokesman is Carolina Toha, also a socialist.

The changes were prompted by Foxley’s decision to resign for personal reasons. Bachelet is in the final year of her four-year term.

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