Taiwan president backs Hong Kong protests
TAIPEI—Taiwan’s president threw his weight behind Hong Kong’s democracy protesters on Monday, saying he was “very concerned” by events in the city and urging China to proceed with “peaceful and cautious measures.”
Chaotic protests saw Hong Kong police fire tear gas on Sunday at demonstrators enraged by China’s refusal to grant full democracy to the semiautonomous city, with thousands remaining on the streets into Monday.
Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou said the protesters’ call for free elections had his full backing.
“We fully understand and support the Hong Kong people in their call for full universal suffrage,” Ma told a gathering of business leaders in Taipei.
“Developments in Hong Kong have drawn the close attention of the world in the past few days. Our government has also been very concerned,” he added. “We urge the mainland authorities to listen to the voice of Hong Kong people and use peaceful and cautious measures to handle these issues.”
Ma’s administration watches events in Hong Kong closely as Beijing wants Taiwan to reunite with the mainland under a “one country, two systems” deal similar to that through which Hong Kong is ruled.
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