Tue, Apr 01, 2014 - Page 3 News List

TRADE PACT SIEGE: Protest leaders receive threats via text message

By Loa Iok-sin, Chien Li-chung and Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporters and staff writer

Student protest leader Lin Fei-fan speaks to fellow demonstrators in the chamber of the Legislative Yuan in Taipei yesterday.

Photo: Lin Cheng-kung, Taipei Times

Student protest leader Lin Fei-fan (林飛帆) yesterday confirmed that several leading figures in the protest movement have received threats aimed toward them or their families, adding, however, that he was not too worried.

During a press conference on the legislative floor yesterday morning, Lin confirmed rumors that leading figures in the protest against the cross-strait service trade agreement — including himself and Chen Wei-ting (陳為廷) — have received text messages threatening to do harm to them if they do not end the occupation of the legislative chamber.

“It’s true that several of us have received such messages. However, I do not think it is an issue that we need to put too much emphasis on,” Lin told reporters.

“We understand that different people have different views on what we are doing. Some are very opposed to it, some support us, I think it is normal, and I do not think we need to overreact,” Lin added.

Lin said that the contents of the messages varied.

“We have not yet checked all the messages, so I would not be able to confirm any particular message,” he said.

Besides messages threatening the personal safety of Lin, Chen and other leaders in the student movement, there have also been messages circulating on the Internet calling on the public to “occupy” the family homes of Lin and Chen in Greater Tainan and Miaoli County respectively.

When asked if he worried about the safety of his family, Lin said that he would rather not talk about personal issues, worrying that such discussion would take the focus away from the protest movement.

For safety reasons, two or three student activists accompany Lin and Chen at all times when they leave the legislative chamber.

Zhongzheng First Police Precinct, which is in charge of maintaining security in the area surrounding the Legislative Yuan, also confirmed that they have received information about the threats, and said that they have asked officers to pay special attention to protect Lin and Chen.

Separately yesterday, the Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office charged Black Island Nation Youth Front member Chen Ting-hao (陳廷豪), who claimed to be the “commander” of the occupation of the Executive Yuan on Sunday last week, with interference with public administration and released him on bail of NT$50,000.

Chen Ting-hao was summoned again yesterday afternoon after he failed to show up for questioning on Tuesday last week along with Hsu Li (許立), the spokesman of Desert Lily, a civic organization that has also claimed credit for the occupation.

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