Student leaders thank crowds who gathered to protest cross-strait trade-in-services pact (2014/03/30)
From midday today a mass of black-shirted protesters assembled on Ketagalan Boulevard and surrounding streets. Organizers estimate that hundreds of thousands of people joined together in protest against the cross-strait trade-in-services pact. Student leaders thanked those who came out to support what they are calling an historical event.
Today’s protest was centered on Ketagalan Boulevard, in front of the Presidential Office, but it went much farther. From Jingfu Gate to Zhongshan South Road, the crowd extended into the distance. Protesters also surrounded the Legislative Yuan. At 4 pm, organizers announced that half a million demonstrators attended.
Student leader Chen Wei-ting gave a speech in which he accused President Ma Ying-jeou of only giving half-hearted, insincere responses to the demonstrators.
Why is Ma Ying-jeou this scared of legislation that would give the people a chance to participate in review of cross-strait agreements? What he’s scared of is a promise he made to Beijing. The Chinese government keeps demanding of him that he complete review of the pact by June.
Another student leader, Lin Fei-fan, said that success of the student-led movement depends on everyone’s participation.
A student movement has successfully morphed into a nationwide civil movement. This isn’t something that the students can achieve alone. It can only be realized if all citizens of Taiwan rally together.
As students continued to maintain their grip on the Legislative Yuan, they were bolstered by black-shirted masses who turned out today in support of their cause.
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