Chen Wei-ting to Hong Kong for Tuesday demonstration
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-06-29 05:38 PM
Chen Wei-ting, one of the leaders in the Sunflower student movement in Taiwan in March and April, boarded a flight for Hong Kong at noon Sunday, with an ETA of 3:00pm. Chen told reporters at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport before departing that he was traveling on Taiwanese identification papers and was prepared to be repatriated to Taiwan if necessary.

The Hong Kong newspaper Oriental Daily quoted Chen as telling acquaintances in Hong Kong that he hoped to offer support to the citizens of Hong Kong as a representative from outside the region. He explained that he wanted to participate in a parade planed for Tuesday, July 1, but if he was refused entry he would take an evening flight back to Taiwan.

Lin Fei-fan posted an entry on his Facebook Sunday afternoon saying that Chen’s flight was delayed slightly and arrived in Hong Kong at 3;40pm. Chen was taken away by Hong Kong Customs officials on arrival, and his current whereabouts and situation are unknown.

Lin, Chen and Huang Kuo-chang attempted to fly to Hong Kong last week for a forum on Monday organized by the New School for Democracy, a group promoting political reform in China. The three, along with fourth participant from Taiwan traveling separately, Lin Chi-hua, were refused entry by Hong Kong officials and returned to Taiwan.

In a Facebook posting Lin and Chen declared, ”We suspect that this is deliberate political suppression by the Chinese Communist Party and the Hong Kong government.” Hong Kong immigration representatives said they could not comment specifically on the case.

The Taiwan activists hope to lend support to a Hong Kong movement aimed at pressuring China’s central government to give Hong Kong residents a greater say in choosing the leadership of the SAR. More than 700,000 Hong Kong residents voted in an online poll to choose among three proposals on how to elect Hong Kong’s chief executive, but Hong Kong officials have dismissed the poll as invalid while official Chinese media called it “a joke.”

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