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France's Bruni pledges earthquake help

L'AQUILA, Italy, July 10 (UPI) -- France's first lady says her country will share with Italy the cost of repairing the historic Anime Santa church in L'Aquila damaged during April's earthquake.

Carla Bruni toured the center of the quake-damaged city Friday while her husband, French President Nicholas Sarkozy, was in town for the Group of Eight summit, Italy's ANSA news agency reported.

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She pledged France would pay half of the cost of restoring the 17th century landmark.

In addition to viewing the damage to the church, Bruni also visited the city's San Salvatore hospital that had to be evacuated after its walls cracked during the quake.

"I'll come back on my own after the summit," Bruni said. "I'll come back to see the work on the hospital and that of all these people who have shown so much courage."

Bruni arrived in L'Aquila Wednesday evening and missed the tour taken by the other G8 spouses earlier in the day.

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