About 100 people marched in Taipei yesterday, demanding that the government amend the law to ensure the rights and well-being of pro-democracy Hong Kong protesters if they come to Taiwan.
The march, organized by International Socialist Forward (ISF), which began in front of the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) headquarters, headed past Taipei Railway Station and the Ximending (西門町) area before ending in front of the Legislative Yuan.
Participants called on the DPP to grant Hong Kong protesters political asylum by amending the Act Governing Relations with Hong Kong and Macau (香港澳門關係條例).
Photo: Chien Jung-fong, Taipei Times
More than 7,000 protesters have been arrested in Hong Kong, including about 1,000 who face criminal charges, since the anti-extradition, pro-democracy protests began last year, and about 500 have been accused of committing the offense of riot, which carries a prison sentence of more than 10 years, ISF spokesperson Vincent Hsu (許偉育) said.
During the campaigns for the Jan. 11 presidential and legislative elections, the DPP promoted slogans backing Hong Kong protesters, but it has yet to take any real action since winning the elections, he said.
Amending the act, allocating a budget and establishing transparent application channels are needed so that Taiwan can provide asylum for Hong Kongers protesting against the totalitarian rule of the Chinese Communist Party, Hsu said.
Hsu rode on a truck during the march, shouting slogans such as “Bring down Emperor Xi,” in reference to Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平), and “Amend the law immediately to protect Hong Kong protesters.”
One Hong Kong resident, surnamed Cheung (張), said he fled to Taiwan on a travel visa, which permits a stay of up to six months, meaning that if the situation in Hong Kong does not improve before his visa expires, he would have no choice but to flee to another country.
Protesters wanted to put colored sticky notes with their appeals on the Legislative Yuan’s main gate, but police deployed barricades to keep protesters away from the gate and the building.
After police rejected the protesters’ requests to remove the barricades, the notes were put on the barricades instead.
Additional reporting by CNA
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