TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Chinese pro-democracy expats assembled on Sunday (Jan. 12) at a forum held by the New School of Democracy and urged the re-elected President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) to help Hong Kong's citizens, in the belief she leveraged pro-democracy protests to win the election.
According to former Southern Weekly editor, Chang Ping (長平), about one-fifth of the banners at Tsai's campaign rallies during the election referenced Hong Kong's protests. The president also publicly supported Hong Kong's pro-democracy activists, which proved to be a successful policy among Taiwan's youth.
"Judging from the results, she did acquire many votes based on the overwhelming support for Hong Kong in Taiwan's society. What I am not satisfied with is the lack of mentions about Hong Kong in her winning speech after the election," said Chang.
Zhou Fengsuo (周鋒鎖), student leader of the June Fourth Incident, said even though overseas human rights organizations can assist Hong Kong activists, Taiwanese authorities should do more. As for replicating Operation Yellowbird (a Hong Kong-based operation helping Tiananmen Square dissidents in 1989) to help Hong Kong protesters escape overseas, he doubted its effectiveness.
"I disagreed with the accusations from Hong Kong about Taiwan's inaction last November. The reason why Operation Yellowbird is highly praised is because of its secrecy," Zhou explained. "On the other hand, I do believe Taiwan can adopt alternatives that help the democratic movement in Hong Kong."
Wu Renhua (吳仁華), who took part in the Tiananmen protests, said the truth will emerge after the election, as to whether the president truly supports Hong Kong's activists or not.