Retired police decry court’s award of damages to Sunflower protesters

Taipei-The Retired Police Officers Association launched a protest Tuesday over a court ruling that requires the state to pay compensation to 10 people who were injured during the 2014 Sunflower Movement protests.

The Taipei District Court ruled in October that the city’s Police Department must pay NT$1.11 million (US$36,174) in total damages to 10 protesters, who suffered serious injuries when police forcibly removed them from the Executive Yuan complex during the 2014 demonstrations.

In a statement released Monday, the association said the ruling was politically motivated and unacceptable.

Those who broke the law have been raised above those authorized to enforce it, the association said.

“In the face of this chaos, everyone should fight for the dignity and honor of the police,” the association said in the statement, as hundreds of retired police officers and their families gathered in protest in front of the Taipei District Court.

In support of the retired police officers, former Taipei County chief Chou Hsi-wei (???), former Central Police University professor Yeh Yu-lan (???) and several legislative candidates of the opposition Kuomintang joined the gathering and gave speeches.

After submitting a petition to the Taipei District Court, the protesters then made their way to the Executive Yuan, where they attempted to storm the complex, as was done by the student-led Sunflower Movement demonstrators in 2014.

The retired police officers and other protesters were deterred, however, by barricades and hundreds of police at the complex.

One protester who tried to jump over the police barricade collapsed and was taken to hospital.

The police displayed warning signs as brief scuffles broke out between them and the protesters.

By Tuesday evening, the protesters had dispersed after the association’s head Keng Chi-wen (???) handed a petition to Chang Hung-chun (???), deputy director of the Cabinet’s Department of Foreign Affairs, National Defense and Justice.

In the petition, the association panned the Taipei District Court ruling, saying it had failed to distinguish between right and wrong and that the Taipei City Police Department should refuse to pay the compensation, according to Keng.

The Sunflower Movement was a student-led demonstration that included a 24-day occupation of Taiwan’s Legislature in March 2014, in protest over a perceived lack of transparency in a trade-in-services agreement signed between Taiwan and China. Due to the protests, the agreement was shelved in Taiwan.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel