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Opponents of Taiwan president plan mass protests on national day

Opponents of Taiwan president plan mass protests on national day

Opponents of Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian said Saturday they plan to surround his office during national day celebrations next week, as part of a campaign to force the embattled leader to resign.
A former Chen ally, Shih Ming-teh, has been leading weeks of protests demanding Chen step down over allegations of corruption by members of his family and inner circle.
Campaign officials said they wanted to mobilize up to 2 million supporters during Tuesday's national day parade on Tuesday.
Shih called on protesters to wear red _ the official campaign color, symbolizing anger against the president _ but to let official guests enter and leave the grounds.
"Our only target is Chen Shui-bian," he said.
Chen has not announced whether he will attend the parade, or break with tradition and stay away. Some lawmakers of his Democratic Progressive Party have called for the cancellation of the Oct. 10 national day celebrations.
Shih started a sit-in outside the Presidential Office building on Sept. 9 and mobilized more than 300,000 supporters for a march one week later.
Over the past week, he took about 500 supporters on a bus tour around the island to fire up local rallies. The latest protest is scheduled for later Saturday in the central city of Taichung.
Chen has been dogged for six months by allegations that relatives and aides used their proximity to him to obtain financial gain.
However, prosecutors said Monday his wife was not involved in a scandal surrounding the takeover of an upscale department store.
Investigators are still looking into charges of insider trading against his son-in-law and allegations that Chen misused secret diplomatic funds.
Chen insists he is innocent and will not leave office before his term ends in May 2008.


Updated : 2021-01-17 23:51 GMT+08:00