Sun, Oct 07, 2007 - Page 3 News List

Balloons won't be allowed at Double Ten festivities

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA

The National Security Bureau will not allow the release of large balloons during Double Ten National Day celebrations next week because they could threaten the security of participants.

Officials of the bureau said that the balloons could pose a threat to fighter aircraft that are scheduled to pass over the Presidential Office in formation, and to elite parachutists who will attempt to glide down Ketagalan Boulevard in front of the Presidential Office.

AVOIDING DISRUPTION

The officials said that the bureau had worked with the organizing committee for the Double Ten festivities to liaise with civic groups in order to avoid disruptions.

Information has been received suggesting that some people could release balloons to publicize political causes, and officials warned protesters not to do so.

They said the measures would ensure the safety of participants and their equipment and that the rally would proceed smoothly.

ALLEGATIONS

Last year, supporters of a campaign targeting President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) over a series of corruption accusations against his family and close aides used the Double Ten celebrations to highlight their cause. The disruptions caused by their actions prompted authorities to step up security ahead of this year's festivities.

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