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Motion Launched to Oust Scandal-hit Chen
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A motion to oust "president" Chen Shui-bian was launched by opposition legislators Tuesday.

The recall motion, announced at a special session of Taiwan's "parliament," although unlikely to pass, further turns the heat up on Chen whose family and aides are already reeling from a series of scandals.

The motion identifies 10 reasons to recall him including violation of laws, creating political chaos, corruption and failing to invigorate the economy.

This step deepens a political crisis which has pushed Chen's public approval ratings to record lows.

Despite holding a slim majority the opposition, led by the Kuomintang and People First Party, lacks the two-thirds required to push the recall motion through.

But opposition lawmakers hope launching it will produce evidence of wrongdoing and stiffen anti-Chen sentiment among the public.

Chen has seven days to respond in writing to the motion which if passed would authorize a referendum being held on whether he should step down. His office has said he has not yet decided as to whether he will respond to defend himself. 

Chen's son-in-law was detained last month on suspicion of insider trading and his wife has been accused of accepting millions of Taiwan dollars worth of department store gift vouchers.

The "parliament" will have 15 days to deliberate the issue and can summon witnesses.

Taiwan media reports said the entire legislature was expected to review the motion on June 21, 22, 23 and 26 and vote on June 27.

(China Daily June 14, 2006)

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