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KMT blames DPP for extra legislative sessions

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) should take the blame for the fact that the Legislature's extraordinary sessions during summer and winter breaks have almost become a “regular” part of lawmakers' work, a ruling Kuomintang (KMT) spokesman claimed yesterday.

DPP lawmakers' frequent protest actions have often stalled parliamentary operations, which have forced the Legislature to hold extraordinary meetings to handle pressing matters after the close of the regular sessions, said KMT spokesperson Chen Yi-hsin.

Chen was responding to DPP Legislator Tsai Chi-chang's claim that the KMT has “normalized” the Legislature's extraordinary sessions. Tsai, a DPP whip, noted that during the past six years since Ma Ying-jeou became president, the Legislature has convened 11 extraordinary sessions.

The Legislature is having an extra session that will last until July 4 to discuss some controversial issues, including a review of the Cross-Strait Trade in Services Agreement.

But Tsai was angry that all issues the DPP would want discussed were blocked by the KMT from the agenda of the extra session.

The KMT spokesperson said the ongoing session is needed because the student-led Sunflower Movement occupied the legislative chamber and stalled its operations for several weeks in March and April.

 Chen went on to claim that the “normalization” of the extraordinary sessions has been the result of the DPP's “violent” and “irrational” actions blocking reviews of bills.

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