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Thursday, January 22, 1998 Published at 16:26 GMT

World: Americas

Investigator demands White House documents
image: [ Clinton: accused of persuading White House aide to lie under oath ]
Clinton: accused of persuading White House aide to lie under oath

The independent prosecutor leading the inquiry into allegations against President Clinton wants to see White House records relating to the activities of the former aide Monica Lewinsky.

[ image: Prosecutor Ken Starr: demanding documents from the White House]
Prosecutor Ken Starr: demanding documents from the White House
Kenneth Starr is widening his investigation into the president's financial affairs to include the allegations that Mr Clinton lied under oath about an alleged sexual relationship with Miss Lewinsky and that he told her to do the same.

Mr Starr has sent a subpoena to the White House demanding a wide range of records and documents in connection with the allegations.

Mr Clinton meanwhile has repeated his absolute denial that he asked her to lie under oath. During a White House news conference, he said: "I would never ask anybody to do anything other than tell the truth.

"Let's get to the big issues there ... about the nature of the relationship and whether I suggested anybody not to tell the truth. That is false."

FBI 'has tapes'

[ image: The President denies having an affair with Miss Lewinsky]
The President denies having an affair with Miss Lewinsky
Newspaper reports from Washington say the Federal Bureau of Investigation has obtained evidence implicating Mr Clinton in these new allegations of sexual misconduct.

The Washington Post newspaper says the FBI made secret recordings of a conversation in which Miss Lewinsky told a friend that the president had asked her to lie about their affair.

Lawyers for Mr Clinton are meeting to discuss the latest developments, which could amount to formal charges of perjury and obstruction of justice. If proven, they would raise the possibility of impeachment proceedings

If successful, Mr Clinton would be removed from office. But under the constitution, impeachment applies only to high crimes such as treason and bribery. At this stage, the president's allies are trying to dampen down speculation that the situation could ever go that far.

The government's chief law officer, the Attorney General, Janet Reno, has declined to comment.


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