Ozawa charged in funding scandal

Japanese ruling party powerbroker Ichiro Ozawa was charged on Monday over a funding scandal, Jiji news agency said, a widely expected judicial move that could widen a rift in the ruling party over whether he should leave the party.

Ozawa’s indictment will give fresh ammunition to opposition parties that control parliament’s upper house and are refusing to join multiparty talks on tax reform to curb Japan’s huge debt and instead trying to force Prime Minister Naoto Kan to either resign or call a snap election for the powerful lower chamber.

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