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Taipei mayor vows to return protester-blocked traffic to normal
Central News Agency
2014-04-27 11:35 PM
Taipei, April 27 (CNA) Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin pledged to use all means to return the traffic to normal by Monday morning on a main thoroughfare being occupied by anti-nuclear protesters as of late Sunday.

The protesters refused to disperse before Premier Jiang Yi-huah promises to halt the building of the controversial fourth nuclear power plant -- though the ruling Kuomintang has made an announcement to that effect. Hau blasted the protesters for paralyzing the city's traffic to pressure the government into meeting their demand. "You've found a wrong theme and found a wrong target," he said. Earlier in the day, thousands of anti-nuclear protesters marched from Ketagalan Boulevard in front of the Presidential Office to the Zhongxiao West Road in front of the Taipei Main Station, where they lay down or sat on the road, creating havoc in an area usually thronging with cars and buses. What the road occupiers are "pressuring" is nothing but the citzens' normal life and traffic, so "the Tipei City government won't allow this to last" beyond Monday morning, when citizens must go to work or school, the mayor stated. Reiterating the city has been supportive of peaceful public assembies, Hau said Zhongxiao West Road is one of the city's major traffic arteries. Many people pass through the road when they return from holiday travels in the central and southern areas of Taiwan. "Occupying Zhongxiao West Road is an illegal act," he said. Police estimated over 20,000 people joined the demonstration parade, interfering traffic on both the north-bound and south-bound lanes of the road. Taipei City Public Transportation Office said the occupation impacted services of around 77 public bus lines, affecting between 450,000 and 460,000 passengers on Sunday. (By Tsai Pei-chi, Huang Yi-han and Elizabeth Hsu)

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