A feature article in a Hong Kong-based magazine depicting President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) as an authoritarian leader was an issue that did not deserve much attention, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said yesterday.
The Chinese-language Yazhou Zhoukan (or “Asia Weekly”) posted on Facebook the cover of its edition to be released next week.
It said that Taiwan was under a new authoritarian government headed by Tsai, characterizing her administration as a “dictatorship arising from a popular election.”
An image on the cover portrayed the president as “Empress Tsai,” with her dressed in royal garb from the Qin Dynasty including a crown while she sits smiling on a throne.
The article, which was posted on the magazine’s Web site, said: “Green camp party’s new authoritarianism” and: “Behind the scenes of Taiwan’s dictatorship that arose from a popular election.”
“The DPP has been criticized as becoming too much like the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) during the Martial Law era,” the article said. “President Tsai is turning into a leader of a new authoritarian state.”
“Although she has authority at all levels of government, she has become an empress after winning the popular vote,” it said. “She rules with an administration akin to a dictatorship, with obsequious lawmakers and a justice system that obeys her command.”
The DPP said in a statement that the article should be “analyzed alongside news reports on Taiwan in international media of renown based in democratic countries.”
“This outlet [Yazhou Zhoukan] has for many years consistently supported the ‘one country, two systems’ model,” the DPP said.
“It has also suppressed democracy and freedom in Hong Kong,” it said.
“The latest cover insinuates a particular message that clearly runs contrary to reports from mainstream international media,” the statement said.
“This magazine has been embroiled in many controversies,” the statement said.
“Not only is it pro-China and a mouthpiece for the government in Beijing, it also selected Hong Kong police officers as its ‘Men of the Year’ for last year and made every effort to suppress Hong Kong’s democracy movement,” DPP spokeswoman Yen Juo-fang (顏若芳) said.
“It is of little value for us to comment on this magazine, which had on a previous cover a photograph of Hong Kong police using strong-arm tactics to quell democracy activists,” Yen said.
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