Portuguese premier tends to a crisis in his Cabinet

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Prime Minister Francisco Pinto Balsemao broke off a vacation in southern Portugal to return here to deal with a political crisis caused by the resignation of a key minister. Despite Mr. Balsemao's pleas that it could bring down the government, Social Affairs Minister Carlos Macedo resigned from his post.

The move fueled new press speculation about the prime minister's chances of political survival. The resignation will force him to negotiate a Cabinet shuffle with his coalition partners, his second since he came to power in Janu ary promising four years of political stability.

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