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Page last updated at 10:12 GMT, Friday, 10 October 2008 11:12 UK

Norway MP called fortune-tellers

Generic image for fortune-teller
Ms Khan's calls were so frequent, some fortune tellers told her to stop ringing

A Norwegian politician has said she will not seek re-election after running up a large phone bill ringing fortune-tellers at parliament's expense.

Saera Khan, an MP for the ruling Labour Party, admits calling pay-per-minute fortune-tellers 793 times in one nine-month period, for a total of 133 hours.

In one three-month period, she spent 48,000 kroner (4,590; $7,750), the daily Verdens Gang newspaper reported.

Ms Khan, 29, who is on sick leave, has said she has paid the money back.

Ms Khan's spending, which was more than twice as much as her parliamentary colleagues, became known after the parliament in Oslo said it would no longer cover her bills.

Her calls became so frequent that many fortune-tellers told her to stop ringing, Verdens Gang reported.

Labour's parliamentary leader Hill-Marta Solberg said advice from fortune-tellers had not influenced the party's work in parliament.

However, neither Ms Khan nor Ms Solberg gave any details of what kind of advice Ms Khan sought, and Ms Solberg said the total amount of the bills would not be made public.

Ms Khan initially said the expensive calls were satellite phone calls to her boyfriend, who she said was on a secret foreign mission with Britain's special forces.

Norway's next general election is due in September 2009.




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