TAIPEI: Thousands of Taiwanese calling for peace and the rule of law rallied in Taipei yesterday to counter a recent series of demonstrations that turned violent and led to clashes with police.
Police estimated that about 1,500 people from the ruling Kuomintang party and their supporters rallied in the downtown area, ending up with a march to police headquarters.
Demonstrators voiced gratitude to police for maintaining peace in the demonstrations since March.
Police estimated 15,000 turned out for a separate gathering organised by the right-wing New Party, which is friendly to the Kuomintang.
Waving Taiwan flags, the crowd kicked off the event by singing the national anthem.
Chanting “Long Live the Republic of China” (Taiwan’s official title), demonstrators fired salvos at Lin Fei-fan and Chen Wei-ting, the most prominent student leaders during the island’s first-ever occupation of parliament starting on March 18.
“What is their contribution to the country? They acted wildly in defiance of the law,” an angry Yok Mu-ming, chairman of the New Party, told the crowd.