KMT lawmakers injured in protest at Foreign Affairs Ministry - Focus Taiwan

KMT lawmakers injured in protest at Foreign Affairs Ministry

Chen Yu-jen (left) and Han Kuo-yu (right)
Chen Yu-jen (left) and Han Kuo-yu (right)

Taipei, Dec. 6 (CNA) Two female lawmakers with the opposition Kuomintang (KMT) were injured Friday during a protest at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) over the death of a diplomat posted in Japan last year.

The incident occurred when a group of between 10 and 20 KMT members, including lawmakers Lin Yi-hua (林奕華) and Chen Yu-jen (陳玉珍) and some city councilors, tried to enter the ministry building through its main entrance to meet MOFA chief Joseph Wu (吳釗燮).

They wanted Wu to give an explanation for the suicide last year of Su Chii-cherng (蘇啟誠), then director-general of the Osaka branch of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Japan, but were blocked from entering by security personnel.

Amid pushes and pulls, Lin and Chen were caught in the melee for more than an hour, causing Chen to faint and resulting in serious bruises to Lin.

The two were later sent to National Taiwan University Hospital for treatment.

Later the same day, KMT Chairman Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) and the party's presidential candidate Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) visited Chen and Lin at the hospital and blasted the ministry for being extremely rude and having no respect for lawmakers.

In response, MOFA spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) said it was lamentable that the ministry's security workers were harshly treated by the KMT lawmakers and city councilors. She called on political workers not to engage in physical violence and stop taking advantage of the MOFA.

The KMT figures wanted some accountability from the ministry over Su's death four days after Yang Hui-ju (楊蕙如), a former campaign aide of Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) who is Taiwan's current envoy to Japan, was indicted by Taipei prosecutors for paying a cyber army to attack opponents and influence public opinion on the Internet.

In the indictment, Yang was alleged as paying Internet posters to defend Hsieh by accusing Su of failing to help Taiwanese people who were stuck at Kansai Airport in Japan when Typhoon Jebi hit the country on Sept. 4. 2018.

The accusations came after Internet postings said the Chinese embassy in Japan had sent buses to take Chinese nationals from the airport. Though the claims were later said to be fake, they sparked a surge of discontent with the Foreign Ministry in Taiwan at the time.

The cyber army called Su and other office workers "the remaining evil elements of the party-state ruled by the KMT," and cursed them to death, which Hsieh himself said contributed to Su taking his own life at his residence eight days later.

Su's death shocked Taiwanese society and stirred a heated debate over whether legislation is needed to restrict online hate attacks by cyber army.

(By Flor Wang, Elaine Hou, Fan Cheng-hsian and Liu Kuan-ting)

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