Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian stopped construction of a controversial nuclear plant on Friday. Prime Minister Chang Chun-hsiung, who announced the decision, said that the plant, which would have been the nation’s fourth, was unnecessary and would have created serious environmental and safety risks. The decision, though not a surprise, angered the Nationalist Party, which was voted out of power in March after 50 years of rule. The Nationalists claim the nuclear plant, which is one-third finished and has already cost $1.4 billion, is crucial for the nation’s economy and its reputation among foreign investors. Chen made a campaign pledge to halt the plant, which is strongly opposed by environmental groups and a number of others in Taiwan, who argue that the country already has plenty of nuclear waste that it doesn’t know what to do with. Opposition politicians are vowing to fight Chen’s decision.

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