Sun, Mar 30, 2014 - Page 1 News List

Stand up for your democracy: protesters

ACTION STATIONS:Taiwanese protesting the service trade pact must show today that they are not a minority, but deeply worried about their country, protesters said

By Alison Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

The anti-“black-box” service trade pact movement has been followed and echoed by overseas Taiwanese too, they said.

The students also announced that they have established an internal deliberative mechanism to counteract and respond to the government’s future calls for communication, be they private or public.

The announcement was made in response to a hullabaloo caused by a supposedly personal meeting between one of the movement’s leaders, Huang Kuo-chang (黃國昌), an assistant research fellow at Academia Sinica, and Presidential Office Deputy Secretary-General Hsiao Hsu-tsen (蕭旭岑) on Friday.

The meeting, after it was exposed, raised doubts about the secrecy of the unauthorized talk, which other student leaders did not know about.

Calling for an end to the authorities’ “private calls and unofficial release of information, and probing and dividing tactics,” civil groups and student representatives have achieved a consensus over the building up of an internal democratic decision-making mechanism to counteract the Presidential Office’s “off-the-record actions,” one of the student group’s representatives said.

The student leaders also responded to questions from the media about a possible communication between the students and President Ma Ying-jeou.

Student leader Chen said that during the previous discussion about the possible meeting, “we had lost our trust in the Ma administration.”

“We are asking Ma not to use party discipline to restrain his party’s (Chinese Nationalist Party – KMT) legislators’ reaction to the proposal of the institutionalization of a mechanism for overseeing cross-strait agreements,” Chen said. “If he cannot promise this, where is the room for discussion?”

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