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President, premier, officials shocked by Metro attack

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- President Ma Ying-jeou yesterday expressed shock and sadness over the Taipei Metro killing spree, saying that he has instructed the relevant authorities to get to the bottom of the case and assist the victims and their family members.

A knife-wielding assailant, 21, yesterday attacked passengers on a metro train traveling from Longshan Temple Station to Jiangzicui Station, leaving four dead, as of press time, and dozens wounded.

The assailant was arrested at Jiangzicui Station in New Taipei City. According to local media, he told police that his actions were premeditated.

Presidential Office spokeswoman Ma Wei-kuo (馬瑋國) said that the president learned of the incident immediately after the news broke, and that he has been closely following the latest developments.

The spokeswoman added that the administration strongly condemns violence, and that although the Taipei Metro killing spree was an isolated incident, the administration will increase police efforts to ensure the safety of metro passengers.

Executive Yuan spokesman Sun Lih-chyun (孫立群) said that Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) was immediately notified of the incident, and that the premier was shocked and deeply saddened.

The premier requested that the National Police Agency (NPA) uncover the assailant's motives, Sun said, adding that the premier also asked hospitals do everything they can to save the victims.

The premier further instructed that the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Transportation of Communications to step up the security of public transportation in order to prevent similar incidents from happening again.

Interior Minister Chen Wei-zen (陳威仁) expressed sorrow over the incident but asked that the public not panic.

The minister explained that additional police will be dispatched to ensure the safety of public transportation.

New Taipei Mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) visited the victims at the hospitals and promised that his city will work with the Taipei City Government to increase police efforts and ensure public safety.

Chu expressed sorrow over the deaths and said that he contacted Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) shortly after he learned of the news.

The New Taipei mayor said that he doesn't understand why someone would want to harm others in such a way, describing the assailant's actions as “insane.”

Hau said that Taipei will work with the NPA to ensure public safety.

May 22, 2014    ContactRush@
What a cowardly act. Crime is increasing in Taiwan, as in other countries, but what triggers it? Societal pressure? Too much homework? Violent TV programs and video games? Lack of morals or beliefs?

How long did it take the police to respond? One man with a baton could have taken this killer out with a whack to the head or knees while staying a safe distance away. But shooting him would have been just as good. My condolences to the all the victims and family.
May 22, 2014    lightcrusaderjr@
Could this be an effect of a China syndrome? If the assailant has no mental disease, if he had been planning to do this since junior high school, and if he was even earlier planning to do the despicable thing that he did after he graduated from college, could not such goal have been hatched by a perception of meaninglessness of life? When people are driven by nothing more than a desire to be famous or infamous or to have a sense of power over others, then are we not seeing a parallel to what the Chinese government is now doing toward its weaker neighbors? Likewise, the very irrational actuation of the assailant appears to be a clear copy cat of the recent events that we have seen in the mainland. Thus, our leaders must give the nation a more meaningful sense of purpose, if we are to regain peace and cooperation among the people.
May 22, 2014    chao_en@
lightcrusaderjr@ wrote:
Could this be an effect of a China syndrome? If the assailant has no mental disease, if he had been planning to do this since junior high school, and if he was even earlier planning to do the despicable thing that he did after he graduated from college, could not such goal have been hatched by a perception of meaninglessness of life? When people are driven by nothing more than a desire to be famous or infamous or to have a sense of power over others, then are we not seeing a parallel to what the Chinese government is now doing toward its weaker neighbors? Likewise, the very irrational actuation of the assailant appears to be a clear copy cat of the recent events that we have seen in the mainland. Thus, our leaders must give the nation a more meaningful sense of purpose, if we are to regain peace and cooperation among the people.
In the US there are also cases of gun shots in public area, and even lot more victims suffered. Why didn't you say that is the glory of democracy and freedom?
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