Student Dennis Wei set free on recognizance after Executive Yuan storming (update)
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-03-25 12:54 AM
One student leader is reportedly set free on his own recognizance at midnight, after hours of detainment following the clash at the Executive Yuan between Sunday night and early Monday. A large group of supporters of the student leader waiting outside the district court in Taipei hailed as they learned the result.

The Central News Agency earlier reported that a total of 61 protesters were arrested Monday for alleged public property and cultural heritage damage, stirring up unrest, or obstruction of justice. 35 of them are detained and await interrogation, including student leader Dennis Wei. The other 26 were released due to lack of evidence after being questioned by prosecutors.

Wei, the student leader of Sunday’s storming action at the Executive Yuan and also member of the Black Island Nation Youth Front, was arrested early Monday by the police and accompanied by his attorney. Wei is a student at National Tsing Hua University and is also the descendant of Taiwan 228 tragedy victim Yang Kui (1905-1985), a prominent Taiwanese writer in Taiwan literature. Wei’s mother is an associate professor teaching at National Dong Hwa University, who came to Taipei in support of her son Monday.

Yang, the great grandfather of Wei, was born in 1905 and studied literature in Japan. He returned to Taiwan in 1927 to devote himself to political awakening and farmer’s activities. He published the first monthly literature magazine in Taiwan in 1935 under Japanese rule and was sent to jail for 12 years for writing “Manifesto of Peace” under Kuomintang rule in 1949, according to Taiwan People News.

Tsing Hua University Professor Chen Ming-chi rushed to the Taipei District Prosecutors Office to show support for his student and explained that Wei did not plan to seize the Executive Yuan, saying he is not the “chief plotter” but the leader making sure things did not get out of control.

Dozens of student-led protesters broke into the Executive Yuan compounds around 8 p.m. Sunday, some removed barricades placed at the main entrance of Zhongxiao East Road, and then brought hundreds of protesters to the front of the Executive Yuan at 9 p.m.

Premier Jiang Yi-huah said Monday that the student-led protests against a service trade pact with China had gone too far, forcing the government to take necessary measures to evict occupants and maintain order. Jiang also defended the use of police force in driving protesters out of the Executive Yuan and insisted that the actions of the protesters were violating democratic principles.

An initial investigation into the Executive Yuan has found considerable damage to the building, including broken windows, doors and ceilings being torn down, and even missing personal possessions belonging to the staff.

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