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Former Taiwan leader Chen Shui-bian in third day of fast

CHEN Shui-bian, former leader of Taiwan, who is now under custody in Taipei, entered his third day of fast yesterday, only drinking water.

Yesterday afternoon, Chen allowed a doctor to measure his blood pressure and blood sugar. The results showed he was a bit low in blood sugar but generally in stable conditions.

The Taipei Detention House said that it would continue to observe Chen's conditions and persuade him to eat food. They will decide whether to force him to eat based on the observations and doctors' judgement.

Chen began his fast last Friday for his dissatisfaction with the prosecutors, according to people who had visited Chen.

But some local media said Chen's fast is suspicious as he began his fast before his scheduled appearance in court.

Chen will have to appear in court for three successive days beginning next Tuesday.

When Chen was put under custody last year, he held a 14-day fast beginning Nov. 12. Later, he was sent to hospital.

The court has held a series of trials this year on corruption cases involving Chen and his family. So far, nine of the first 14 charged have admitted guilty, while Chen's wife, Wu Shu-chen, also confessed part of her guilt. One person has not appeared in court for illness.

Only three of them, including Chen Shui-bian, still refused to admit guilty so far.


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