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$30 Million Earmarked For PNG Allegedly Stolen

MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, May 7, 2008) – Three Taiwanese ministers have denied any criminal wrongdoing after quitting their posts over the loss of millions of dollars in an international embezzlement scandal.

The resignations come in the final weeks of Chen Shui bian's government, with the three ministers resigning in connection with a US$32 million chequebook diplomacy scandal.

They were said to be involved in a botched attempt to bribe Papua New Guinea to open diplomatic relations with Taiwan.

But two businessmen, who acted as secret middlemen, are accused of pocketing the money.

The vice premier Chiou I-jen, the foreign minister, James Huang, and the vice defence minister, Ko Chen-heng, have all stepped down after their homes and offices were raided.

They have all denied taking the money.


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