Taipei would like see clearer rules applied to protest activities in the plaza in front of Taipei 101, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said yesterday.
“There is nothing wrong with the plaza serving to display Taiwan’s democracy and freedom, but there must be standards,” Ko said.
He said the city government would seek to establish a special “protest zone” on the site, while adding that the final policy would hinge on talks with the management of the Taipei 101 building, which administers the plaza.
In response to questions on how the city would response to a suit filed yesterday by the pro-unification Concentric Patriotism Association (愛國同心會) accusing the police department of infringing on their rights, Ko said that everything would be done in accordance with the law, but that group members should be more civilized when expressing their views.
As Taipei 101 is one of the most popular attractions for Chinese tourists in Taipei, Falun Gong practitioners and Taiwan independence advocates have regularly demonstrated at the site.
While most of the demonstrations have been peaceful without police interference, in recent years, pro-China groups — including the Concentric Patriotism Association — have often showed up, not only to campaign for their cause, but also allegedly to attack people who disagree with them.
Last week, association executive director Zhang Xiuye (張秀葉), a Chinese immigrant, was arrested on charges of verbally abusing police officers and interrupting official business, leading members of the group to file lawsuits against the mayor and Xinyi Police Precinct Chief Wu Ching-tien (吳敬田).
OVERHAUL NEEDED: The government should improve its agricultural processing capabilities and expand to new markets to limit its reliance on China, an expert said China’s ban on Taiwanese pineapples was “unsurprising,” and Taiwan should have years ago altered its produce export strategies and target customers, experts said. China on Friday abruptly suspended imports of pineapples from Taiwan, saying that it had on multiple occasions discovered “harmful biological entities” on the fruit. Calling it an “unfriendly” move, the Council of Agriculture (COA) said that 99.79 percent of the pineapples sent to China since last year have met China’s import standards. Chiao Chun (焦鈞), the author of Fruits and Politics — A Recollection of Cross-strait Agricultural Interaction Over the Past Decade (水果政治學：兩岸農業交流十年回顧與展望), said that China’s announcement is clearly targeting
The Council of Agriculture yesterday signed a Taiwan-Australia Agricultural Cooperation Implementation clause to open a new export market for the nation’s pineapple crop. The clause is an addition to existing cooperation measures, it said. China on Friday last week abruptly announced that it would suspend pineapple imports from Taiwan starting on Monday, on grounds that it had on multiple occasions discovered “harmful organisms” in shipments of the fruit. The public and private sectors have since joined hands to purchase the local fruit to help the nation’s pineapple farmers. Canberra has requested that all pineapples for export to Australia have their crown buds removed,
DECADES OF INFLUENCE: Over the past 20 years, China has made inroads with Aborigines, funding political campaigns and trips, a legislator said Lawmakers have called on the National Security Bureau to investigate claims of pervasive Chinese influence among Aboriginal communities. Legislators pointed to a surge in communist propaganda and Chinese-funded projects over the past few years, which they say are aimed at infiltrating and buying political influence among Aboriginal communities. “China has for decades carried out wide-ranging ‘united front’ tactics and propaganda campaigns targeting Aborigines,” said Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Chen Ying (陳瑩), a member of the Puyuma community in Taitung County. “Now, they are influencing elections for local councilors and village chiefs, offering money for candidates to mount their campaigns, and to
DISSATISFACTION? If the referendums collect more than 700,000 signatures each, they would have gotten the most signatures in the shortest time, the party said The Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) two referendum petitions — one on banning the importation of pork with traces of ractopamine and the other on holding referendums on the same day as national elections — had as of Thursday gathered 691,398 and 674,497 signatures respectively, the party said yesterday. If the petitions collect more than 700,000 signatures apiece, they would have garnered the most signatures in the shortest time since the Referendum Act (公民投票法) was amended in 2017, party officials said. The KMT proposed the “anti-ractopamine pork” or “food safety” referendum just days after President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) announcement on Aug. 28 last