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The BBC's Richard Galpin in Jakarta
"All the major parties support [censure]"
 real 28k

Indonesia analyst Professor Michael Hitchcock
"The parliamentarians are showing they are a force to be reckoned with"
 real 56k

Former Indonesian minister Rias Rashid
"He used to be a very popular guy"
 real 28k

Monday, 30 April, 2001, 05:08 GMT 06:08 UK
Indonesian president faces censure
Supporters of Abdurrahman Wahid, popularly known as Gus Dur
Thousands of Wahid's supporters rally in Jakarta
The Indonesian parliament is debating whether to censure President Abdurrahman Wahid for a second time over corruption allegations, with the three largest parties endorsing calls for the motion.

Such a move would pave the way for impeachment proceedings to begin, possibly within weeks.

President Abdurrahman Wahid
President Wahid: Appealed for calm
Several thousand of Mr Wahid's supporters rallied in drenching rain in Jakarta, but pulled back from a planned march to parliament, which is surrounded by razor wire and guarded by thousands of police and troops.

On Sunday, Mr Wahid appealed to his followers not to resort to violence.

But his most radical supporters, who travelled to the capital from East Java, have pledged to fight to death to protect him, raising fears of an outburst of violence if the censure motion is passed.

Opposition united

Opposition politicians say almost all the parties have agreed to pass the second censure motion against Mr Wahid for his alleged part in two financial scandals, involving the misuse of $6m.

Pro-Wahid demonstrators
Some supporters want to fight a "holy war" for Wahid
The president - who has repeatedly protested his innocence - will then have one month to respond.

If the legislators are not satisfied with Mr Wahid's response, there is likely to be a special session of the highest legislative body, which need only a simple majority to vote the president out of office.

But the BBC's Richard Galpin in Jakarta says Mr Wahid is determined to stay in office - and he has thousands of supporters who are willing to fight a "holy war" for him.

Our correspondent says a pro-Wahid rally held in Jakarta on Sunday was meant as a warning to members of parliament that they are playing with fire by trying to impeach the president.

Wahid supporters take the train from East Java to Jakarta
Many of Wahid's supporters travelled from East Java
Dressed in Muslim white robes and green scarves, some of his supporters were visibly upset at the prospect of Mr Wahid's impeachment.

Quoting from the Koran, the president accused his opponents of trying to oust him illegally.

But, in an emotional address, Mr Wahid urged people not to resort to violence and the event passed off largely peacefully.

The allegations

The president was censured by parliament at the beginning of February.

Mr Wahid has always denied financial wrongdoings in the two scandals that parliament has been investigating.

One of the scandals, dubbed Bulogate, involves the president's personal masseur who allegedly fled with $4m from the national food agency, Bulog.

The other scandal, Bruneigate, refers to an alleged $2m donation from the Sultan of Brunei.

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See also:

19 Apr 01 | Asia-Pacific
Wahid threatens parliament
14 Mar 01 | Asia-Pacific
Street protests continue in Jakarta
12 Mar 01 | Asia-Pacific
Wahid stands firm amid protests
13 Sep 00 | Asia-Pacific
Analysis: Indonesia's fragile archipelago
06 Aug 00 | Asia-Pacific
Analysis: Wahid's many problems
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