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Israeli PM Under Increased Pressure to Quit


Israel's ruling Kadima party is holding an urgent meeting Thursday at which party leaders are expected to continue to press outgoing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to leave office before February elections.

Mr. Olmert already resigned over corruption allegations, but is still serving as interim prime minister until a new leader is chosen.

Today's meeting comes a day after Israel's attorney general said he is considering indicting Mr. Olmert on one of the corruption cases pending against him.

The case is related to allegations that Mr. Olmert defrauded money from different organizations by billing them twice or more for travel expenses. Mr. Olmert may face charges of fraud, bribery and tax evasion.

Mr. Olmert's lawyers rejected the allegations against him and said they were confident he would not be charged. The prime minister's office also released a statement saying Mr. Olmert had no plans to step down before a new government is formed.

The travel expenses case is one of several graft allegations against Mr. Olmert. Police have questioned him repeatedly. All of the allegations date to offices he held before he became prime minister in 2006.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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