Pan-blue rallies in Taipei draw major politicians
The China Post news staff and CNA
May 5, 2014, 12:12 am TWN
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Rallies held by pan-blue parties to show support for the government and law enforcement in Taipei, yesterday, attracted major politicians.
The ruling Kuomintang's (KMT) Youth League held a rally in Taipei Sunday morning to show support for police's law enforcement Sunday morning, a response to the tense Sunflower Movement protests that kept officers busy through March and April.
Demonstrators marched to the National Police Agency (NPA) around 10 a.m., when NPA Deputy Director-General Her Hai-min met them to receive flowers they carried. About 1,500 people took part in the march, according to the Taipei City Police Department.
The deputy police chief told reporters that law enforcement authorities respect freedom of speech, but it should be practiced in a lawful manner. Police stand for law and order, he said, and will firmly enforce the law.
He said that police actions to remove protesters have been "misunderstood" by some as state violence, but he insisted that the acts were part of enforcing the law.
Sean Lien, KMT candidate for Taipei mayor, joined the Youth League in the rally to express appreciation to the police officers who have spent days and nights on duty to contain what he called protests that went beyond the boundaries of rational demonstrations.
Asked whether he would support police in similar circumstances if elected in November, Lien said that upholding the law is the most important principle for a city administration. If demonstrators act illegally, police should strictly enforce the law, he said.
Later in the afternoon, the New Party held the "New May 4th Movement" rally at the Ketagalan Boulevard to show support for democracy and the rule of law in Taiwan.
New Party Chairman Yok Mu-ming (郁慕明) said that the party organized the rally to counter the "populism" that has damaged Taiwan's hard-earned democracy. Yok said that the number of people participating in the demonstration is not important; what is important is their determination to express their patriotism. President Ma Ying-jeou's sisters Ma Yi-nan (馬以南) and Theresa Chao (馬冰如) also attended the event. The organizer estimated that around 10,000 people participated in the rally.
KMT lawmaker Tsai Cheng-yuan, one of three ruling lawmakers targeted by recall movements launched by Sunflower supporters, was present at the KMT rally.
Tsai blasted the protesters as a violent mob who provoked and challenged the police by using the protests as a pretext to "illegally raise funds" and burden society.
Tsai said that he does not care about the recall bids and suggested launching counter recalls for opposition lawmakers.
"It would be easy to cut down some green grass in Taipei City," he said, referring to lawmakers from the "pan green" camp that includes the main opposition Democratic Progressive Party.