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Government will not bow to violence: president

2018/04/25 23:39:12

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文)/CNA file photo

Taipei, April 25 (CNA) The government will not bow down to violence and the planned military pension reform will go ahead, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said Wednesday in the wake of a protest that turned violent at the gates of the Legislative Yuan earlier that day.

Tsai made the remarks in a Facebook post, stressing that those who resorted to violence cannot stand for patriotic members of the armed forces who are loyal to the country's citizens.

The protesters from the veterans group "800 Warriors" who were protesting against a government bill to reform their pension system clashed with police as they tried to tear down the police barricade to enter the Legislature building.

Some protesters threw bottles, plastic chairs, sticks, stones and smoke bombs, which resulted in injury to 32 police officers and 11 reporters, according to the Executive Yuan. Police arrested 63 people.

Ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) spokesperson Lin Tsung-sheng (林琮盛) said the DPP thanked the police for their hard work and called on protesters to not use physical violence.

Such acts will not earn the support of the people, Lin said, noting that the DPP severely condemns any violence.

However, the opposition Kuomintang (KMT) was sympathetic, saying that they can understand the anger of the retired servicemen and women.

KMT lawmaker Lee Yen-hsiu (李彥秀) said their anger was proof of a lack of government interest in communicating with them.

She added that while people have the right to protest, she she hopes it can be expressed rationally and peacefully.

(By Liu Kuan-ting, Lu Hsin-hui, Yeh Su-ping and William Yen)