Premier says 228 report is a definitive document

MARK OF RESPECT: Premier Su Tseng-chang also said the 228 Incident Memorial Foundation would become a permanent body and showed off a new postage stamp

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Tue, Feb 27, 2007 - Page 4

Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) announced yesterday that the 228 Incident Memorial Foundation's report on the violent clashes that began on Feb. 27, 1947, will be regarded as an official document.

"Many of the victims of the 228 Incident are long gone and documentation is very difficult to come by. The foundation put a lot of effort and time into gathering crucial information for its report. I commend their efforts and express my appreciation," Su said.

Speaking during the weekly Cabinet meeting yesterday morning, Su said that the government wanted to emphasize its endorsement of the foundation's report, which was published last year.

"We owe the victims of the 228 Incident a great debt. This is [payment for] just part of [that debt]," Su said.

The Cabinet commissioned the foundation to produce a report on the incident in 1992 with a view to retelling the story as accurately as possible. The report concluded that dictator Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) should take responsibility for the incident.

Su said that the foundation would not cease to function now that the report had been produced.

"The publication of this report will not be the foundation's final act. On the contrary, the foundation will have an annual budget of NT$300 million [US$9 million]," Su said.

Su said the Democratic Progressive Party, since coming to power in 2000, had attempted to make reparations to the relatives of 228 Incident victims.

Although the Regulations for Handling of and Compensation for the 228 Incident (二二八事件處理及補償條例) state that the foundation will be disbanded in June 2010, Su said the Cabinet had decided to transform the foundation into a permanent governmental body.

"We need to keep compensating victims' family members for the loss of their loved ones. We also need a government office to continue the work of human rights protection and promotion," Su said.

During the Cabinet meeting, officials also came to an agreement that the national flag will fly at half-mast on Feb. 28 every year.

Su also announced that the Taiwan Post Co (臺灣郵政) would introduce the first stamps with the word "Taiwan" on them tomorrow.

"This is another small gift from the government to the relatives of 228 Incident victims," Su said.

In related news, Cabinet Spokesman Cheng Wen-tsang (鄭文燦) said that Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall could be converted into a memorial for all of Taiwan's elected presidents.