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Sword-wielding assailant says he planned to assassinate President Tsai

2017/08/19 18:37:35

Lu Chun-yi (center), CNA file photo

Taipei, Aug. 19 (CNA) A man who attacked a military police officer outside the Presidential Office on Friday with a sword told prosecutors that his main intention was to kill President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), according to a statement Saturday by the Taipei District Court.

In a detention hearing, the court said Lu Chun-yi (呂軍億) was clear about his plan to assassinate the president and therefore must be remanded in custody.

The Taiwanese assailant, aged 51, managed to approach the guarded west wing of the Presidential Office on the intersection of Bo'ai Road and Zhangsha Street at around 10:15 a.m. Friday, whereupon he struck at the neck of a guard with a sword.

Investigators later determined that Lu had stolen the Japanese military sword from the Armed Forces Museum in Taipei by smashing the display case with a hammer.

"Tsai Ing-wen was my main target, but I was also prepared to attack anyone else if they tried to get in my way," Lu told investigators, according the court.

During the attack, Lu was overpowered by other guards before he could reach the Presidential Office building. Police later found a People's Republic of China flag in his bag.

The guard who was attacked was rushed to the nearby National Taiwan University Hospital with a neck wound but was in stable condition, the Presidential Office said Friday.

(By Liu Shi-yi and Lee Hsin-Yin)
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