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July 29, 2017

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Chang decries treason charges as 'white terror'

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Former Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Deputy Minister Chang Hsien-yao (張顯耀) yesterday held his first press conference in the wake of his resignation and said that the treason allegations against him are an instance of "white terror."

Expressing a willingness to cooperate with the investigation, Chang said that if necessary he will contact the investigators in charge of his case on his own initiative to clarify the facts.

Local reports claimed yesterday that the Investigation Bureau suspects Chang of having been recruited as a spy by the mainland Chinese authorities and of having passed on at least five classified documents to mainland Chinese officials.

"If this isn't (an instance of) white terror then what is? (In light of these events,) how will follow-up negotiations on cross-strait affairs continue? The mutual trust built up between the two sides of the strait will cease to exist," Chang said.

Chang also stressed that he has always been loyal to his country and he carried out his duties in accordance with the instructions of the president, the secretary-general of the National Security Council and the minister of the MAC.

After the press conference, Chang told reporters that MAC Minister Wang Yu-chi (王郁琦) did not tell him that he was being placed under investigation for "leaking classified information."

When asked if the minister had lied to him, Chang reportedly nodded but did not give a verbal response.

MAC Response

In response, the MAC said that when Wang spoke to Chang on Aug. 14, the minister made it clear to Chang that he was being asked to resign because there had been a report about him disclosing classified information.

President Ma Ying-jeou was not only aware but also supportive of the decision to transfer Chang and have him placed under investigation, Wang said, according to local reports.

Wang added that he had reported the incident to Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) and National Security Council Secretary-General King Pu-tsung (金溥聰), and King had reported the incident to the president.

Investigation

The Taiwan High Prosecutors Office said yesterday that it has requested that the Investigation Bureau submit more information on Chang before it can determine whether or not the case falls within its jurisdiction.

The Investigation Bureau said that after comparing the information it had collected with information provided by the MAC, Chang was found suspicious of violating the Classified National Security Information Protection Act (國家機密保護法).

That the Investigation Bureau submitted the case to the Taiwan High Prosecutors Office instead of district prosecutors shows that the case is believed to involve classified information related to national defense, an unnamed senior prosecutor was quoted as saying.

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