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Taiwan's Ruling Party Backs President Chen, Rejects Recall Bid


Taiwan's ruling Democratic Progressive Party says it will support its leader, President Chen Shui-bian, against an opposition bid to force him from office because of a corruption scandal.

D.P.P. officials say they will reject an opposition motion to recall Mr. Chen when it comes up for a parliamentary vote later this month. The motion would authorize a referendum to be held on whether he should remain in power.

It is the third recall attempt by the opposition in the past six months. The D.P.P.'s continued support of Mr. Chen means the motion is once again unlikely to gain the necessary two-thirds majority in parliament.

Opposition lawmakers initiated the motion on Tuesday in response to prosecutors filing corruption charges against Mr. Chen's wife last week. The charges are related to alleged misuse of government money from a special diplomatic fund.

Prosecutors said Mr. Chen is also suspected of corruption in the case, but cannot be charged while he is in office.

Mr. Chen has denied any wrongdoing, but says he will step down if his wife is convicted.
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