BEIJING - A small group of Chinese, chanting "Lee Teng-hui is a traitor to
the Chinese nation", held a brief protest at Japan's embassy in Beijing on
About 15 protesters -- outnumbered by police and reporters -- denounced Toyko
for letting the Taiwan separatist Lee visit recently, and demanded the release
of a Chinese man arrested for throwing a bottle at the politician as he was
Chinese demonstrators hold a protest rally outside Japan's
embassy in Beijing June 18, 2007. The protesters denounced Tokyo for
letting the Taiwan separatist Lee Teng-hui visit recently, and
demanded the release of a Chinese man arrested for throwing a bottle at
the politician as he was heading home. [Reuters]
The group dispersed after about 30 minutes following the choreographed
protest, during which they held up banners reading "Support Taiwan Independence
= DIE" and pictures of the man arrested for attacking Lee, proclaiming him a
Police cordoned off the road in front of the embassy and put up signs telling
reporters where to stand.
"We are furious that such a righteous person has been arrested without
reason," protester Zhao Ronglai told reporters. "I hope the world's people hear
the cry of the Chinese.
"The Chinese want peace, not war, but we cannot rule war out," added Zhao,
who said he was from a group called the China Patriots' Association.
The 84-year-old Lee, despised by Beijing for asserting Taiwan's sovereignty,
went to Japan earlier this month on a trip that had threatened to chill an
emerging thaw in Tokyo's relations with Beijing.
As he was leaving, Japan resident Xue Yi threw two plastic bottles at Lee,
though they missed.
Both bottles were filled with soft drinks, and Xue is still being held by
In May, former forced labourers and at least one woman forced into wartime
sex slavery held a similar protest at the Beijing embassy.