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Jun 24, 2024, 9:42am EDT
securityEast Asia

Lai slams China over Taiwanese independence death penalty law

Lai Ching-te
REUTERS/Ann Wang
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The News

Taiwan’s president has hit back at Beijing after China passed a new law designed to curb support for Taiwanese independence.

On Friday China issued new legal guidance for punishing people who support Taiwanese independence and made them eligible for the death penalty, although China does not have legal jurisdiction in Taiwan.

In response, Taiwanese President Lai Ching-te said: “Democracy is not a crime; it’s autocracy that is the real evil,” adding that China had “no right to sanction Taiwan’s people” across borders for their political beliefs.

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Beijing sees Lai as a separatist, and staged threatening war games off the island’s coast after his inauguration last month. Taiwan said there had been a sharp increase in Chinese military activity in the region, with some aircraft reaching just 31 miles from the island’s southern tip.

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