Dozens of students and activists last night took part in a silent procession around the Executive Yuan compound in Taipei, marking the one-year anniversary of the bloody police crackdown on the Executive Yuan protests on March 23 last year during the Sunflower movement.
Led by a coalition of youth activist groups, the participants paid respect to protesters who were injured in last year’s demonstrations, which ended violently after then-premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) ordered the police to clear the protesters by dawn on March 24.
Since April last year, about 50 injured protesters have filed lawsuits against Jiang, then-National Police Agency director Wang Cho-chiun (王卓鈞) and other police officials over charges related to police brutality — including charges of attempted murder.
Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times
Student activist Huang Yen-ju (黃燕如), a member of the Black Island National Youth Front, said that the exact number of protesters injured in the movement might remain unknown, as many protesters have been reluctant to file charges or apply for medical assistance out of fear of police prosecution.
Following the incident, the Taipei District Prosecutors’ office indicted 93 students on charges of unauthorized entry, citing Article 306 of the Criminal Code. The number was significantly higher than the 22 protesters indicted for the occupation of the Legislative Yuan’s main chamber.
The Executive Yuan protests occurred a week into the Sunflower movement protests last year, triggered by mounting dissatisfaction over a lack of an official response from the government toward demands for oversight of the proposed cross-strait service trade agreement.
Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times
While student-led protesters occupied the Legislative Yuan’s main chamber for 23 days — from March 18 to April 10 — the siege to occupy the nearby Executive Yuan compound ended in failure, as the police armed with batons, shields and water cannons swiftly overwhelmed protesters during the night.
The crackdown, which utilized a show of force unseen in Taiwan in more than two decades, has often been described as a turning point for the Sunflower movement, as public sympathy swelled in support for the injured protesters.
The incident revealed hidden fault lines among participants of the Sunflower movement, as leading activists based in the Legislative Yuan’s main chamber later distanced themselves from the decision to storm the Executive Yuan.
Last night’s event was held as part of a two-day event commemorating the Sunflower movement’s anniversary titled “Walking Back to the Place Without God.”
In heavy rainfall, the solemn procession paused momentarily when it reached Beiping E Road on the northern side of the Executive Yuan compound, as participants stopped to offer their blessings to the protesters who were injured.
PROTECTION: The New Taipei City mayor said a pass could cover stores, but not eateries, while Ko Wen-je said vaccinated people could be exempted from some rules Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) and New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi (侯友宜) on Saturday proposed implementing a “COVID-19 pass” regulation that would allow only vaccinated people into certain areas. New Taipei City is planning to require a “COVID-19 pass” for entry to “vulnerable spaces” to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Hou said. Non-students entering elementary schools in New Taipei City are required to show their COVID-19 vaccination cards or proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test. This is for the protection of students under the age of 12, who are not eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, city officials have said. The
‘GOOD FRIEND’: The Slovenian prime minister said he had visited Taiwan four or five times, and that Taiwanese should have the right to determine their future The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday welcomed Slovenia’s plan to establish a representative office in Taiwan, after Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Jansa revealed the plan in an interview with Indian TV station Doordarshan on Monday. Taiwan is a democratic country that respects international democratic standards and international laws, the Slovenian prime minister said in the interview. Slovenia and Taiwan are working on “exchanging representatives,” he said. “Of course, this will not be on the level of embassies. It will be on the same level as many of the EU member countries.” “When I spoke with our businessmen who are trading with Taiwan, they
BRIBES FOR VOTES: A probe found that funding for the scheme came from Huang Daonian, director of the Economic Bureau at Changsha City’s Taiwan Affairs Office Five Taiwanese businesspeople working in China were yesterday found guilty of taking money from Chinese authorities to buy votes for Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) candidate Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) in the 2020 presidential election. The Taipei District Court sentenced Association of Taiwan Investment Enterprises (台灣同胞投資企業協會) Changsha City Branch chairman Lin Huai (林懷) to three years and 10 months in jail, with deprivation of his civil rights for four years. The other four convicted in the case, who all received 20-month prison terms, were China New Family Association (中華兩岸新家庭協會) chairwoman Chiang Ming-sia (蔣明霞), Hunan Shaoyang City Association in Taiwan (湖南邵陽旅台同鄉會) director Chang Kuo-chun (張國君),
LUNAR NEW YEAR: The nation is expecting 4,200 international travelers to arrive today and 3,900 tomorrow, as people return home for the holidays, the CECC said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday said it expects imported cases of COVID-19 to further increase today and tomorrow — the peak period for international arrivals before the Lunar New Year holiday. The nation has seen more imported cases of COVID-19 since it implemented a new policy on Tuesday requiring travelers on long-haul flights to undergo a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test upon arrival. Those who test positive are taken directly to hospitals from airports. Most of the recent confirmed cases of COVID-19 were travelers arriving from the US, CECC data showed. On Tuesday, 58 of the 625 travelers arriving at Taiwan