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Colombia Names Coffee Executive as New Defense Minister

Jul 27--President Alvaro Uribe has named Gabriel Silva, an executive with the National Coffee Growers Federation, to be Colombia's new defense minister, the government said Monday.

Silva will take up his post in August, the Office of the President said.

The coffee executive succeeds Juan Manuel Santos, who resigned in May and plans to run for president in 2010 if Uribe decides against seeking a third term.

Silva is a confidant of Santos.

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