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Taiwanese lawmaker 'indignant' about leaving WHA meeting

2012/05/22 21:36:40

Taipei, May 22 (CNA) A Taiwanese opposition lawmaker said Tuesday that security staff at the World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva who asked her to leave when she staged a silent protest in a visitor area left her feeling "indignant."

Lin Shih-chia of the minor opposition Taiwan Solidarity Union told CNA in a telephone interview that she took off her coat to reveal a T-shirt printed with the words "Taiwan is Taiwan, not China," during a speech by WHA Secretary-General Margaret Chan.

Lin, who was immediately asked to leave the venue and had her visitor pass confiscated, said her action was to express that there is no such thing as "one country, two areas" in relation to Taiwan and China. She added that she left voluntarily without causing a stir.

According to WHA regulations, participants and spectators are not allowed to bring in slogans, leaflets or other promotional materials.

Lin was not part of the official Taiwanese delegation to the WHA, in which Taiwan has observer status.

Taiwan's representative office in the Swiss city said in a statement that it felt sorry about the incident and will provide Lin with necessary assistance to re-enter the venue.

During the incident, Lin agreed to take off the T-shirt with the message, but objected to a request by security staff to hand it over to them, the statement said. She said she decided to leave and not to return to the WHA meeting for the time being.

Lin and another ruling Kuomintang lawmaker Su Ching-chuan have organized a protest group that has traveled to Geneva to demand full WHO membership for Taiwan on the sidelines of the annual WHA from May 21-26.

(By Chen Ching-fang, Tsao Yu-fan, Hanna Liu)