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Bill on transitional justice not unconstitutional: Presidential Office

2017/03/01 22:23:07

(CNA file photo)

Taipei, March 1 (CNA) A draft bill to pursue transitional justice is aimed at restoring the rights and reputation of the victims and is in no way a violation of the Constitution, the Presidential Office said Wednesday.

Presidential Office Alex Huang (黃重諺) issued the statement in response to the opposition Kuomintang's (KMT's) criticisms of the government's bid to enact a new law on transitional justice.

On Tuesday, President Tsai Ing-wen said at a ceremony to commemorate the Feb. 28, 1947 crackdown that her government hoped the Legislature would pass the Statute on Promoting Transitional Justice before the end of the current session in June.

Commenting on the government's plans, the KMT said the draft transitional justice legislation was nothing more than political maneuvering that violated the principles of the Constitution and the protection of people's private information.

What the draft statute seeks to do can be done under the existing Archives Act, the KMT said.

However, Huang said the government was trying to transition from the earlier period of authoritarianism to a real democracy, in keeping with the people's expectations.

It is the incumbent government's responsibility to deal with the illicit assets of political parties and investigate human rights violations and policy errors by previous governments, he said.

It is also the government's duty to restore the rights and reputations of the victims and their descendants, Huang said.

There should be no concerns that doing the right thing will violate the Constitution, he said.

"Rather, such efforts are in the interests of the country and will lay the groundwork for national development," he said.

(By Sophia Yeh and S.C. Chang)
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