Interior Minister visits family of late policeman
By Lauly Li , The China Post
May 3, 2014, 12:02 am TWN
Interior Minister Chen Wei-zen (陳威仁) yesterday visited late police officer Ko Hsiung-fei's (柯雄飛) family in Miaoli County to express his condolences, saying that he hopes there will be no more police deaths due to exhaustion.
Ko, an officer who served under Chunan Precinct (竹南) of Miaoli County, was dispatched to Taipei twice during the Sunflower Movement, developing internal bleeding in the brain due to exhaustion on March 28, the minister said.
Chen noted that after being unconscious for more than one month, Ko passed away on Thursday morning.
The minister said that police devote themselves to maintaining social order, noting that over the past few months, police have been under a lot of stress due to the constant demonstrations.
Chen urged demonstrators to express their opinions in a more rational manner, adding that he does not hope to see any more police collapsing due to exhaustion.
The minister said that because the National Police Agency (NPA) still requires extra police in Taipei from other cities, he will ask the NPA to pay extra attention to the mental and physical conditions of police.
Increasing Number of Retiring Police Officers
The Ministry of Civil Service (MCS) recently presented a report, saying that 2,233 police officers voluntarily retired in 2013 — twice the number of the annual average in the past decade.
Chen said that the reason behind the increasing number is related to the higher frequency and the larger scale of demonstrations over the past few years.
The minister went on to say that not only did the demonstrations get bigger, demonstrators have also become more aggressive than before.
1,800 Police Officers Stationed at Legislature
Protesters on Tuesday blocked off all exits of the Legislature to prevent lawmakers from leaving the complex. The Taipei City Police Department and the NPA yesterday dispatched a total of 1,800 police officers to the Legislative Yuan in order to prevent similar incidents from taking place again.
However, there were no demonstrations around the Legislature complex yesterday.
During an interpellation session, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmaker Chiu Yi-ying (邱議瑩) yesterday asked Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) when he plans on removing the barricades around the Legislature and reducing the number of police stationed at the complex.
Jiang responded that the NPA and Taipei police will assess the situation, adding that he will give the order to remove the barricades when circumstances have stabilized.
Jiang went on to say that he hopes Chiu can help urge demonstrators to express their opinions in a democratic fashion. In response, the opposition lawmaker said, "I knew you were going to throw that question at me. We can't control these people."