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President concludes tour of 18 temples around Taiwan

2018/02/18 19:20:06

Taipei, Feb. 18 (CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) wrapped up her Lunar New Year holiday temple tour Sunday after visiting 18 temples in 17 counties and cities around Taiwan in three days, according to the Presidential Office.

Tsai embarked on her tour on Friday, the first day of the Year of the Dog on the lunar calendar, to pray for good luck for the people of Taiwan and distribute well-wishing red envelopes to the public.

In Taiwan, many people, in particular Buddhists and Taoists, tend to visit temples during the Lunar New Year holiday to express their piety and sincerity, in the hope of being blessed in the new year.

After traveling to southern Taiwan on Friday and northern Taiwan on Saturday, Tsai headed to central Taiwan on Sunday, where she visited Fushing Temple in Yunlin County, the Shoutian Temple in Nantou County, the Haotien Temple in Taichung, and the Nanyao Temple in Changhua County.

Although some people who oppose Tsai's pension reforms staged protests, this was nothing unusual in a democratic society, Presidential Office spokesman Alex Huang (黃重諺) said.

The spokesman said their protests, however, raised tension on the president's tour and created a burden for the police and secret service staffers.

Tsai wished the protesters happiness in the coming year, while urging society to accommodate different opinions, according to Huang.

(By Su Lung-chi, Yeh Tzu-kang, Su Mu-tsun, Wu Tse-hao and Frances