Fri, Nov 05, 2004 - Page 2 News List

Blue camp still defiant after High Court ruling

JUSTICE KMT Chairman Lien Chan said the High Court ruling was unfair and a travesty of justice just one day after saying that killing the president would be justified

By Debby Wu  /  STAFF REPORTER WITH AGENCIES

The blue camp remained defiant yesterday after the Taiwan Hight Court ruled against its position that the March 20 presidential election was unfair and that its results should be nullified. The pan-blue camp argued that the March 19 shooting tainted the election, and had possibly been arranged by the pan-green camp in order to win sympathy votes.

The pan-blues also vowed to appeal the ruling: "The battle is not yet finished. This suit was just the first trial, and the result is not yet final. We will appeal the case for the sake of the nation's stability, justice and fairness," Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Lien Chan (連戰) said yesterday.

Lien made the statement at a press conference held at the KMT headquarters shortly after the court announced its ruling. Lien was joined by People First Party Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) and KMT vice chairmen Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) and Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), as well as a host of pan-blue lawyers.

Upset about the ruling, Lien and Soong criticized President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and declared they would continue to pursue a "fair result."

"We decided to resort to the judicial system to sort out the election disputes because we had a high expectation of justice. But the High Court's judgment today has let us down and feeling disappointed," Lien said.

"The judgment is a heavy blow to the people's faith in justice," he added.

Lien also accused the court of being negligent of its investigation duties when reviewing the case. He went on to criticize Chen for comparing Taiwan's presidential election to that of the US, and said that the way Chen won the Taiwanese election was completely different from how Bush won re-election, and the March 20 election result was not fair.

"We are pursuing the case further, not to change the election result, but for justice and fairness," Lien said.

Soong, meanwhile, gave his full support to Lien's declaration to appeal the case.

"I support Lien's decision to appeal the case in order to find out the truth. The truth cannot remain unknown. We cannot concede now," Soong said.

At the beginning of the press conference, pan-blue lawyers accused the court of ignoring evidence offered by the blue camp which they claimed prove that the March 19 shooting of Chen had actually been planned by the president himself, and the shooting changed the election result.

The lawyers were also unhappy about the court's refusal to review the voter name lists and said there were hundreds of thousands of potential invalid ballots that had not been disqualified because the name lists were not reviewed.

Although Wang did not speak during the press conference, he told the media that the party's decision to pursue the case further probably would not influence the upcoming legislative election campaign.

"I cannot say whether the decision would improve our campaign," Wang said.

"We will probably appeal to the voters that the judgment is not fair, and we need them to support the opposition camp to monitor an unjustified government," Wang said.

Pan-blue lawyers have pinned their hopes on a second lawsuit -- still pending -- that will seek a new election by citing other voting irregularities.

Timeline of the KMT-PFP Alliance's refusal

March 20 KMT presidential candidate Lien Chan refuses to concede, demands a recounted and files suits with the Taiwan High Court to have March 20 elecion result declared invalid.

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