Collor rules out resignation

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The Independent Online
BRASILIA (AFP) - Brazil's suspended President, Fernando Collor de Mello, said yesterday he would neither resign nor delay his trial in the Senate. Instead, he would fight to prove his innocence.

'I will resist democratically until the end,' he said, a day after he refused to appear at the opening of the Senate trial. 'I will resist until the last moment to prove my innocence.'

Mr Collor, who was suspended in October after the Chamber of Deputies impeached him for accepting millions of dollars from a slush fund, fired his lawyers and refused to appear before the Senate, forcing Tuesday's trial to be postponed until 29 December. Yesterday he picked Jose Rocha Moura, from his home state of Alagoas, as his new defence lawyer.

Brazilians have been outraged by his attempts to delay his trial. A poll this week showed only 8 per cent want him to return to office.