Thu, Nov 09, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Activist cheers overseas Taiwanese alliance's efforts

By Max Hirsch  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) represents the single greatest threat to democracy and human rights in the world, an activist said yesterday.

Wang Wenyi (王文怡), who works for the Epoch Times -- a Falun Gong-linked publication -- is best known for heckling Chinese President Hu Jintao (胡錦濤) on the White House lawn last April.

She was in Taipei to cheer on the Global Alliance for Democracy and Peace, a loose organization of overseas Taiwanese promoting the country's interests abroad.

Overseas Compatriot Affairs Commission (OCAC) Executive Officer Yvonne Wang (王盈蓉) said the commission provides financial and adminstrative support to the alliance.

"With 99 branches in 49 countries on six continents, the alliance is one of the biggest Chinese organizations in the world," she said.

A total of 136 delegates from all corners of the globe took part in the alliance's fifth annual conference at the Howard Plaza Hotel yesterday.

The alliance issued several statements. Chief among them was a call for China to remove the more than 800 ballistic missiles targeting Taiwan, and for Taiwan to continue with its democratic development and be a "lighthouse of democracy" for China.

"The CCP oppresses human rights not only at home, but also abroad," Wang Wenyi said.

"It can do that because organizations and governments worldwide are eager to curry favor with Beijing amid the country's rise, to cement trade and economic relations. So they go along with the CCP's bidding," she said. "That's why the CCP is a global threat, not just a threat to its own people."

She called on the Taiwanese to cherish their freedoms and rights at home, adding that such freedom here "scares" the CCP because it represents a threat to its monopoly on power.

On Tuesday, the alliance issued a statement endorsed by 136 delegates supporting President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁).

"In our returning to the country from all over the globe to attend the fifth annual conference of the Global Alliance for Democracy and Peace, we wish to express our support for President Chen," the statement said, adding that out of the 159 delegates who met with Chen on Tuesday, 136 admired his respect for the judiciary and believed he would be exonerated

OCAC Minister Chang Fu-mei (張富美) told the Taipei Times yesterday that at least 23 overseas delegates had declined to publicly give their blessings to Chen, saying that they weren't comfortable adding their signatures to the statement of support.

But, she added, the fact the delegates held views and opinions that were not necessarily in line with those of the majority was a clear sign of democracy within the alliance's own membership.

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