Taiwanese politicians in Kaohsiung report receiving death threats from Hong Kong

Several Kaohsiung City council members in have reported receiving anonymous death threats in the mail


(CNA photo)

TAIPEI (CNA) -- Several council members in Kaohsiung have reported receiving anonymous death threats in the mail, with City Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Councilor Chiu Chun-hsien (邱俊憲) saying Saturday that local police are investigating the matter.

Chiu, who was attending an event to promote Kaohsiung's agricultural produce, showed reporters a cellphone photo he took of a letter he received the day before, noting that the words "Taiwan, China" were written next to his address on the envelope.

Clearly, the message was intended to denigrate Taiwan's sovereignty, he said.

The letter warned Chiu to watch his step or risk the lives of his family and signed off with the exclamation "Hahaha."

Ever since Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) became Kaohsiung mayor, many people have been harassed or threatened, he said, urging Han's supporters to remain calm and rational.

Over the past few weeks, similar cases have been reported by several politicians and political critics, including KMT lawmaker Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安), Kaohsiung City councilors Chien Huan-tsung (簡煥宗) and Cheng Meng-ju (鄭孟洳), and political critic Huang Kuang-chin (黃光芹) whose Facebook pages or Youtube accounts received threatening comments after they questioned Han during interpellation sessions, made unfavorable comments about him or questioned him during an interview.

Police said May 23 that they have confirmed almost all the initial IP addresses used by the individuals leaving threatening comments were in China.

However, the situation reported by Chiu is a first because this is the first time the threats were delivered through the mail.

The letter was apparently sent from Hong Kong in China, he said, referring to the postal stamp.

On Saturday, Kaohsiung DPP councilor Kao Min-lin (高閔琳) and New Power Party councilor Huang Jie (黃捷) also reported receiving similar threatening letters the day before.

According to Kao, the handwriting appears to match the letters addressed to Han and Huang, suggesting they were written by the same person.

The councilwoman said she was not afraid, and that the more intense the personal attacks or intimidation, the more she feels she is doing the right thing for Kaohsiung.

Kao said she has received online threats from opposition Kuomintang (KMT) supporters, Han supporters and online Chinese netizens ever since she spoke on behalf of Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) during a press conference when he was running for Kaohsiung mayor in October last year.

Meanwhile, Huang brushed aside her fears, despite revealing on her Facebook page Saturday that she also received a letter threatening her life on Friday.

The councilwoman's social media has been filled with threats from online netizens ever since she questioned the Kaohsiung mayor about establishing Free Economic Pilot Zones in the city during a council meeting on May 3.

The letters have been handed over to the police and an investigation is currently ongoing.