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June 23, 2017

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Lin announces end to nuke power fast

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairman Lin Yi-hsiung (林義雄) announced yesterday the end to his hunger strike to end the usage of nuclear power in Taiwan.

After a weeklong fast, Lin showed signs of weakening as he had to walk supported by his family members or volunteers. The anti-nuclear advocate headed to the hospital to "nurse his health" on Tuesday and declared the strike's ending yesterday.

In spite of ending the hunger strike, Lin gave a statement speaking of his determination to protest until the government responds by terminating the near-finished Fourth Nuclear Power Plant project.

"It is no longer (just) an issue to stop the construction of Nuke 4; we should push for the termination of Nuke 1, 2 and 3," said Lin.

Lin started his hunger strike at the Gikong Church on April 22.

Thanking the Taiwanese people who participated in anti-nuclear protests, Lin said that he had hoped that his decision to fast would lead to Taiwanese people actively demanding that the government take notice of their protests.

"Tens of thousands have given me hearty support and expressed concern over my health. Citizen groups and anti-nuclear activists were seen holding protests that more and more people are participating in, especially the new generation of citizens. Politicians are also doing their share, as the DPP's Chairman Su attends meetings in hopes of reaching a consensus on Nuke 4 construction and even ruling Kuomintang (KMT) members have voiced their opinions in line with the protests ... Thank you for all your efforts and concern," said Lin.

In response to the ruling party's announcement to "halt" Nuke 4 construction after the many protests, Lin said that it was a "short-term goal" for the activists. "But the ruling politicians are not satisfied with their consent; they continue to play word games saying that halting the construction does not mean the plant would be terminated ... from all their responses that shy away from responsibility, we are led to understand that the continuous protests of the people are the only way left," said Lin, who also expressed gladness at the people's growing awareness of the nuclear controversy.

It will take a long time to achieve the goals of terminating nuclear power, said Lin, who asked people to gear up their determination for protesting, develop effective ways of expressing their beliefs and push for the Legislature to amend the Referendum Act.

Lin Never Supported Violent Protests: Su

The DPP caucus yesterday expressed satisfaction with Lin's decision to stop fasting, also calling for the ruling and opposition caucuses to negotiate and shoulder the relevant responsibilities.

In regard to the recent agitated protests against nuclear power, DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) called for citizens not to "blur the focus" of Lin's beliefs and stressed that Lin never supported violent protests.

Cabinet 'Glad' for Strike's End

The Cabinet is glad to see Lin end his hunger strike, said Cabinet spokesman Sun Li-chun (孫立群) yesterday.

"This is the beginning of cross-party collaborations that will solve the Nuke 4 disputes peacefully ... we are also inviting him to attend the government's energy councils to be held this August and September," said Sun.

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