5 Dec 2008

[Press release 1204] In response to GIO's response to Freedom House's ealier statement

Dumb (GIO) Government Information Office, deaf Ma

GIO officer Shi responded lightly to the suggestion of investigating the riot incident during Chen's visit from Freedom House, an American human right organization, on December 2. He only agreed to strengthen the police training. The wild strawberries question this response. It is obvious that the response admitted the fault of the police, but why GIO only said about strengthening the training and avoided an apology? And what exactly is the training project? What to strengthen? The skill of evacuating people and the media by shooting water? The wild strawberry strongly reprimands the play of the word by the Ma government.

It is obvious to see that Ma's government still would not confront the issue of police abused rights honestly, avoiding their responsibilities in serving the public, and have shifted the blame squarely on to the violoent protests which broke out on the last evening of Chen's visit. They argued that the fact some DPP members would like to offer reward for those who would egg wash Chen together with previous envoy Chang's incident meant Police have the rights to abuse their power. We despises a government which only looks after interest of the police and corporates whilst refusing to look after it's people.

Wild Strawberries movement has never swayed from the initial three demands. President Ma and Premier Liu must apologise for the violent clashes erupted between protesters and the police, resignation from Director General of the National Police Agency and National Security Bureau, and lastly remove the need to apply for protest. We insist our government to uphold the responsibility of police abusing their rights, suppressing basic human rights during Chen's visit. Taiwanese citizens' freedoms are by right, stated in our constitution, should not be violated by government in anyway, including saving a "honored guests's reputation".
Officer Shi stated the citizens that were removed from the scene and those that have their flags taken had forced themselves into a restricted zone, it wasn't about whether they have carried a flag, they were not removed because police were refraining the Chinese envoy Chen from seeing the protesters. However from the witness accounts, those that did not carry a flag were able to freely move between all the zones. Moreover, the police at the scene were not able to state a single law to justify their behavior and often chose to keep quiet. This blatant expansion of police power would probably put those executing it in shame.

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