Saturday's protest in Taipei initiated by the Democratic Progressive Party and other secessionist groups has aroused complaints among Taiwanese, who blame the politicians for blowing the people's money on a "political carnival" that "makes no sense."
Some participants in the march shouted themselves hoarse to fan hostility against the mainland. Leading figures of Taiwan authorities and "Taiwan independence" secessionists, including former Taiwan leader Lee Teng-hui, were among the marchers.
Wang Hsiaopo, professor of National Taiwan University, said the Anti-Secession Law is induced by the wild advocacy of "one country on each side" and "rectification of Taiwan's name" through amending the constitution by Taiwan authorities.
"Now the DPP is organizing the march to oppose the law. Isn't it duping the Taiwan people?" said Wang.
Hsu Wen-lung, former chairman of one of Taiwan's largest conglomerates Chi-Mei Corp., said Taiwan's economic development depended on the mainland. "Promoting independence will only lead Taiwan to war and drag Taiwan people into a disaster," he said.
"We pay a lot of attention to President Hu Jintao's recent speech and the promulgation of the Anti-Secession Law. We feel more at ease after learning the contents of the speech and the law," said Hsu.
Taiwan's opposition parties refused to take part in Saturday's protest, saying "It is improper for leaders of the authorities to appear in the street protest."
Several Taiwan-based civilian organizations, including the Alliance for China Reunification, the Association of the Chinese Professor, Democratic Solidarity, the Chinese Peaceful Unification Association and the New Alliance, published announcements expressing their opposition to the protest in the past few days.
"The Anti-Secession Law is forced by Taiwan authorities," said one of the announcements. "If Taiwan authorities could abide by their pledges of 'five no's' policy, why should they fear the law?"
Pledges in the "five no's" policy include no declaration of Taiwan independence, no incorporation of "two states" into its constitution, no change of the so-called country's name and no referendum on Taiwan independence.
Both Hu's speech on March 4 and the Anti-Secession Law expressed the message that the Chinese people will do their best to seek peaceful reunification of the motherland but will never tolerate "Taiwan independence."
Organizers said it might take at least 80 million new Taiwan dollars (US$2.54 million) to mobilize the people to take to the streets in Taipei to protest against the Anti-Secession Law adopted by China's National People's Congress on March 14.
(Xinhua News Agency March 27, 2005)