Tens of thousands of people yesterday rallied in Taipei to protest against media outlets that spread fabricated news for Beijing and called for tighter regulations to counter China’s manipulation of local media.
Demonstrators started arriving on Ketagalan Boulevard in front of the Presidential Office Building as early as 7am, despite the rain, for the protest, which began at 2pm.
The purpose of the rally is to oppose Chinese authoritarianism, said Internet celebrity Holger Chen (陳之漢), who organized the protest with New Power Party (NPP) Legislator Huang Kuo-chang (黃國昌).
Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times
China has seriously infiltrated Taiwan’s media and businesses, with CtiTV News (中天新聞) being an obvious example, he said.
The network “reports whatever it likes and promotes [certain politicians] to a godlike status,” he said, adding that he wonders how many people have been brainwashed by its so-called news.
“We want such media outlets to go away,” he said, urging people to stand up against media manipulation and defend Taiwan regardless of their age and party affiliation.
Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times
Chen said that before the rally, a representative from Want Want China Times Media Group (旺旺中時集團) — which owns CtiTV and the Chinese-language China Times newspaper — approached him, asking for a chance to clarify things on his Internet show and saying they were willing to make improvements.
He told the representative that all they need to do is to report about the Tiananmen Square Massacre and human rights violations in Hong Kong, Chen said.
He was referring to reports earlier this month that the China Times gave only limited coverage to massive protests against a controversial extradition bill in Hong Kong and that it removed all content directly related to the massacre shortly after the incident’s 30th anniversary.
Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times
Hopefully, the rally will prompt lawmakers to improve laws to counter Chinese infiltration and motivate the executive branch to crack down on media outlets that have been infiltrated, Huang said.
“It is important that we build a defense mechanism based on the idea of ‘defensive democracy’ to protect Taiwan’s democracy and the rule of law, which are under attack,” he said.
The freedoms of speech and the press should be protected, but there must be boundaries, he added.
Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times
Huang said he had invited all major parties and presidential hopefuls to the rally, but only the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and the NPP sent representatives.
“China has not only infiltrated Taiwan’s media, but also its schools, communities, temples and other organizations,” DPP Secretary-General Luo Wen-jia (羅文嘉) told the crowd.
To counter Chinese infiltration, which aims to chip away at Taiwan’s democracy, the nation needs to have laws requiring companies controlled by foreign states to disclose their relationship and related activities, he said.
Taiwan does not need news media that distort the truth to promote the interests of Beijing, NPP Chairman Chiu Hsien-chih (邱顯智) said.
The NPP legislative caucus would push for the passage of laws against infiltration and other national security bills, he added.
Former Causeway Bay Books manager Lam Wing-kei (林榮基), filmmaker Kevin Lee (李惠仁) and Taipei City councilors Chiu Wei-chieh (邱威傑) and Miao Po-ya (苗博雅) also attended the rally.
VIGILANCE: From tomorrow all arrivals must provide the result of a PCR test issued within three days of boarding, and the CECC asked people to report anyone who has faked their result The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) expects an increase in the number of returning travelers in the coming days, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said yesterday, adding that the varying qualities of COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test reports from other countries is a big concern. Chen, who heads the center, was speaking to the media on the sidelines of a Taiwan Foundation for Rare Disorders scholarship award ceremony in Taipei. “As the global COVID-19 situation is worsening, and with some holidays coming up, there might be an increase in the number of overseas Taiwanese returning to Taiwan,” he
SKIN, ENTRAILS: Placards also dotted the legislative chamber, with slogans such as ‘Oppose ractopamine pork — not US pork’ and ‘Much ado about nothing’ Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) lawmakers yesterday pelted Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) with pig skin and entrails as he addressed the Legislative Yuan on pork imports for the first time since the KMT’s boycott began on Sept. 18. Opposition lawmakers have been demanding an apology from the government for its decision to lift its ban on the importation of US pork containing residues of the livestock drug ractopamine. After Su arrived at 10am for his 13th attempt to deliver a regular policy report, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus moved to change the agenda to accommodate the premier. The motion resulted in cries of
CECC RULES: The autumn-winter COVID-19 prevention program, including mandatory mask wearing in eight types of public venues and indoor facilities, begins today A temporary, two-week ban on Indonesian migrant workers entering the nation is to begin on Friday, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) announced yesterday as it reported 24 new imported cases of COVID-19. Twenty of the new cases are Indonesian migrant workers who arrived between Nov. 11 and Friday last week, said Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center. The cases were discovered during a special project on Friday to conduct polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests on all 939 recently arrived Indonesian migrant workers in centralized quarantine facilities, as the majority of imported cases in the past
Passports with a redesigned cover highlighting Taiwan would be issued starting on Jan. 11, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday. The new cover design, which was announced on Sept. 2, highlights Taiwan by printing the word in a larger font. While the new passport cover retains “the Republic of China” in Chinese, the English name is printed along the outer circle of the national emblem, which would enable other nations to clearly identify that it is a Taiwanese passport, not a Chinese passport, the ministry said. The costs and application procedures for the new version are the same as