TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwanese groups in Japan want Taiwan’s main international airport to be renamed in honor of late President Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), reports said Saturday (Aug. 1).
Lee died Thursday (July 30) at the age of 97. He was Taiwan’s first native-born and directly elected president, serving from 1988 to 2000.
A suggestion was reportedly made to rename the country’s main airport, Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, as “Lee Teng-hui International Airport,” CNA reported. The idea found so much support that Taiwanese groups in Japan issued a joint statement Saturday evening calling for the name change.
Lee’s work to transform Taiwan from an authoritarian state to a democracy held valid lessons for all of Asia and would be included in history books, the statement said. The supporters of the new name also referred to other airports around the world named after significant leaders, such as New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport and Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport.
Ironically, the airport in Taoyuan used to be known as “Chiang Kai-shek International Airport” or CKS until 2006, as a symbol of the authoritarian martial law era.