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June 28, 2017

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Business leader calls on students to end occupation

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The students who since March 18 have occupied the Legislative Yuan in a protest against the service trade pact signed with China should end their protest, a business association leader said Saturday.

Although the government has failed to communicate well with the people, the students who wish to express their opposition to the controversial agreement signed in 2013 should follow the law and protest in a legal way, said Chang Chih-yuan, secretary-general of the Allied Association for Science Park Industries, in Hsinchu.

"Enough is enough," Chang said, calling on the students to halt their occupation of the parliament and adding that people taking part in a mass demonstration in front of the Presidential Office the following day should refrain from breaking the law.

Responding to complaints that the pact will only benefit business groups, Chang said this is false, as many entrepreneurs are responsible for the livelihoods of many families in Taiwan.

He suggested that more leaders from the major industry goups should hold open discussions on the issue to help people realize the importance of the agreement to Taiwan's economy.

Chang's remarks echoed those of President Ma Ying-jeou, who urged students to return the parliment to lawmakers at a press conference that day.

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