Taiwanese Americans Express Solidarity With The “Wild Strawberries” Students, Urging The Ma Ying-jeou Government To Heed International Concern

(Washington, DC.)  The Board of Directors of the Formosan Association for Public Affairs (FAPA) expressed solidarity with the “Wild Strawberries Movement,” and anger and dismay at the Taiwanese police’s forcible removal of the “Wild Strawberries” and a group of some 100 Tibetans from Liberty Square in Taipei in the early hours of December 11, a mere few hours after December 10 “International Human Rights Day.”

The Board of Directors of FAPA issued the statement in conclusion of their 2008 annual board meeting in Washington over the weekend. FAPA is a Washington-based grassroots advocacy organization that seeks international recognition for an independent and sovereign Taiwan.

The FAPA Board of Directors considers the student sit-in a peaceful expression of concern, which is guaranteed under the principles of freedom of speech and of assembly.  FAPA thus deeply regrets that the police arrived with overwhelming force at the Square at 3 am and evicted the “Wild Strawberries” students and the Tibetans, cracking down on their peaceful demonstration in an unreasonably hour and manner.

The FAPA Board of Directors states: “We consider these actions by the Ma government a severe infringement on freedom of speech and of assembly. The Ma administration’s early morning crackdown and breaking up of the peaceful demonstration right after International Human Rights day is highly disturbing to international observers and an embarrassment to Taiwan’s image as one of the freest countries in the world. ”

The FAPA Board of Directors concludes, “We are talking to the offices of our elected Members of Congress on Capitol Hill on Monday December 15th. Given the recent rapid deterioration of Taiwan’s civil liberties and human rights, we feel compelled to inform our elected officials of the latest crisis in Taiwan and urge them to closely monitor the situation and express concern at an appropriate time.”

At the summit of the heads of Taiwanese American organizations that was held in Washington during the same weekend, the organizations endorsed the statement issued by the FAPA Board of Directors. These organizations include Dr. Kang-Lu Wang Memorial Foundation, the Formosan Association for Human Rights, North America Taiwanese Professors’ Association, Professor Chen Wen-Chen Memorial Foundation, Taiwanese Association of America, World Federation of Taiwanese Associations, World Taiwanese Congress and World United Formosans for Independence-U.S.A.

 

台美人堅定支持野草莓與圖博(西藏)人運動,呼籲馬政府勿漠視國際關切

台灣人公共事務會(FAPA)全體委員於昨日在華府召開年度委員大會之際發表嚴正聲明,堅定支持台灣野草莓學生運動,並譴責台灣警方在國際人權日結束不到數小時之內,於12月11日淩晨驅除自由廣場上靜坐抗議的野草莓學生與西藏人士。

FAPA委員會表示:「我們認為馬政府此舉嚴重侵犯言論與集會自由。馬政府特定選在清晨時分採取驅除行動,令國際人士質疑其動機何在。而驅除行動竟發生在國際人權日結束不到短短數小時之內,實在對台灣是世界最自由國家之一的優質形象蒙上羞辱。」

FAPA委員會接著表示:「由於我們15日原本就預計拜訪美國國會山莊,有鑑於台灣近日來人權與民主快速倒退,我們感到有責任向美國國會議員告知台灣近日來的政治民主危機,我們也將呼籲美國國會密切觀察台灣情勢,並適度表達關切。」

在FAPA召開委員會同時,十數個台美人社團也於華府就台灣日前情勢進行高峰會,社團領袖們在會中同聲支持FAPA委員會聲明。聯署社團領袖包括王康陸博士紀念基金會會長王康厚、全美台灣人權協會會長王明珠、北美洲台灣人教授協會和陳文成教授紀念基金會會長劉斌碩、全美台灣同鄉會會長謝榮竣、世界台灣同鄉會聯合會會長程韻如、世界台灣人大會召集人郭重國、台灣獨立建國聯盟美國本部主席陳少明。

(December 15, 2008) Taiwanese Americans Express Solidarity With The “Wild Strawberries” Students, Urging The Ma Ying-jeou Government To Heed International Concern / 台美人堅定支持野草莓與圖博(西藏)人運動,呼籲馬政府勿漠視國際關切