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Last Updated: Friday, 7 May, 2004, 09:13 GMT 10:13 UK
Taiwan politicians brawl over procedure
Ruling Democratic Progressive Party lawmaker Lai Ching-teh, left, exchanges punches with independent lawmaker Chu Hsing-yu, May 7, 2004
The lawmakers were eventually separated by colleagues
A Taiwanese lawmaker has taken a breathalyser test inside parliament after TV cameras showed him brawling with a fellow politician.

Chu Hsing-yu called a traffic policeman into the chamber after he was accused of being drunk.

"Both times it was zero," Mr Chu reportedly said as he showed off the test's negative results.

Mr Chu and Lai Ching-teh of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party had earlier started fighting over legislative procedures, according to the AP news agency.

Mr Lai suggested after the incident that all politicians should take an alcohol test before legislative meetings. "Otherwise this will influence the country no less than drunk driving affects traffic," he joked.

TV stations had showed Mr Chu grabbing Mr Lai and trying to wrestle him onto a desk. He then tried to head-butt his colleague before jabbing him in the stomach.

Taiwan's parliament has a history of fist-fights.

In 2001 MP Lo Fu-chu was suspended for six months after punching a female colleague in a row at a committee meeting.




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