Premier condemns violence in pension reform protests

Premier Lin Chuan on Thursday condemned the use of violence by some individuals protesting against pension reforms.

On Wednesday a group of protesters rallied outside the legislature, blocking some lawmakers and other officials from entering. Some scuffles also broke out. The group was mainly made up of public servants, teachers and military personnel. These are the groups who stand to be most affected by the government's pension reform plans.

Premier Lin said that the government is seeking to make the country's pension system more sustainable in the long term. He said he accepted that many people's interests are concerned and that objections are inevitable. He said space and opportunity should be given to protesting voices. He said that at the same time, however, violence was unacceptable. His remarks were relayed by Cabinet spokesperson Hsu Kuo-yung.

"The government condemns the use of violence in protesting, especially the use of violence in blocking lawmakers, as well as some mayors and county chiefs. We also call on the police authorities to use the evidence from the scene to pursue action [against offenders]," said Hsu.

Earlier, President Tsai Ing-wen on the day of the protests urged the public to remain calm and rational at a crucial time for the reforms.

Source: Radio Taiwan International