Fri, Oct 24, 2008 - Page 4 News List

DPP member in ARATS controversy apologizes to party

NEVERLin Chin-shun said he would not apologize to the vice chairman of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait, who he called the ‘enemy’

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA, NEW YORK

A member of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), who on Tuesday jumped onto the hood of a visiting Chinese official’s car and stamped on it, made a public apology yesterday for his behavior and asked the party to punish him.

Lin Chin-shun (林進勳) apologized for the problems he had caused and for the damage to the party’s image and asked the DPP’s Tainan City Committee to penalize him. However, Lin said he would not apologize to Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS) Vice Chairman Zhang Mingqing (張銘清).

Insisting that Zhang was “an enemy,” Lin asserted that he would never give in to pressure and apologize to Zhang, saying that he was safeguarding Taiwan’s independent sovereignty.

The case would be handled by the DPP’s central authorities, officials at the party’s Tainan city branch said.

Zhang arrived in Taipei on Sunday in his capacity as dean of Xiamen University’s School of Journalism in order to attend an academic forum in Tainan. He was was the head of a 22-member delegation on a four-day visit.

During a visit to the Confucius Temple in Tainan, he was besieged by Tainan City Councilor Wang Ting-yu (王定宇) and dozens of pro-independence supporters who shouted in his face. Amid the melee, Zhang fell to the ground.

Wang yesterday also refused to apologize to Zhang.

“If there’s anyone who thinks my conduct has harmed the party’s image, I am willing to apologize if the chairwoman asks me to,” Wang said in Taipei yesterday. “However, I will never apologize to Zhang.”

Wang visited DPP headquarters in Taipei yesterday, following a request from DPP Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文).

Outside DPP headquarters, DPP Taipei branch director Huang Chin-lin (黃慶林) led a group of supporters to show support for Wang.

The demonstrators argued that they were angered by Zhang’s remarks earlier on Tuesday when he said “there will be no war if there’s no Taiwan independence.”

Zhang filed a formal complaint with police against those who had harassed him on Tuesday. He cut short his visit to Taiwan and returned to Beijing on Wednesday.

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