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AOL to sell Comedy Central stake

AOL Time Warner said Tuesday it will sell its 50 percent stake in cable channel Comedy Central to Viacom for $1.2 billion in cash. Viacom, which had owned the other 50 percent of Comedy Central, will become the sole owner of the channel and fold the operations into MTV Networks.

The sale highlights AOL Time Warner's ongoing efforts to reduce its $27 billion debt. The media giant plans to take its Time Warner Cable division public this summer, which it hopes will raise $4 billion. In March, AOL Time Warner ended its relationship with Hughes Electronics' satellite television service DirecTV, which was initially a $1.5 billion investment.