ITV News sends Ray to China

ITV News has appointed John Ray to be its first ever China correspondent, a move which highlights the growing importance that ITN is putting on the country.

The programme has also announced a significant reshuffle of its foreign bureau staff.

Ray said: "China is already changing all our lives. It's the big story of the century. To witness it, and to report on it for ITV News, is a huge challenge."

Ray, who was previously ITV News' UK editor and senior political correspondent, will commence his new role at the beginning of October 2006.

ITV News' announcement comes just weeks after ITN announced that Lindsey Hilsum is to become Channel 4 News'

China correspondent. The pair will work from a shared office in Beijing.

John Irvine, who is currently ITV News' correspondent in Bangkok is to become the programmes' Washington correspondent.

Scotland correspondent, Martin Geissler, will move to a more high profile role as Africa correspondent and Robert Moore leaves Washington for Brussels to become Europe correspondent.

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