Sun, Jun 04, 2006 - Page 1 News List

Thousands join pan-blue rally against Chen

By Mo Yan-chih and Jean Lin  /  STAFF REPORTERS

But Ma's attempt to constrain party members from taking drastic moves against Chen and his government failed again, as many members urged the party to "do something" immediately in response to the public rage against Chen.

"Chairman Ma should not underestimate his influence. We believe that if he comes forward [to support the recall], public support rate will rise at least 20 percent," said KMT Legislator Ting Shou-chung (丁守中), who first proposed the recall motion.

Ting said he would continue to push for an impeachment, but denied that his action was a challenge to Ma's authority.

Given the high threshold required for the passage of an impeachment proceeding, several other KMT legislators, including Wu Yu-sheng (吳育昇) and Justin Chou (周守訓), instead proposed pushing for a Cabinet resignation during the convention.

KMT central standing committee member Lien Sheng-wen (連勝文) and KMT Legislator Yao Chiang-lin (姚江臨), on the other hand, proposed initiating a mass protest to invite the public to voice their anger against Chen.

According to KMT Spokeswoman Cheng Li-wen (鄭麗文), Ma in the end decided to attend the rally as he felt the need to address pan-blue supporters' views. Cheng decline to go into details on the reasons behind Ma's sudden change of mind.

Rally organizers said approximately 100,000 people attended the protest, but the Zhongzheng First Police Precinct put the figure at around 10,000. They did not give details on how the figure was reached.

The rally ended at 6pm and as of press time the crowd was slowly dispersing.

also see story:

Editorial: Chen should stay where he is

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