Taiwan student hurls book at president in China protest

Taiwan student hurls book at president in China protest

TAIPEI - A college student threw a book at Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeou as he left a Taipei hotel to protest increasingly cordial relations with China, his office confirmed Saturday.

The student glanced a copy of "Formosa Betrayed" off the leader, a highly critical historical account of Taiwan's ruling Kuomintang party in the years after World War II, in the incident on Friday.

"We want to tell the president that Taiwan is the country of the Taiwanese and we don't want the president and his Kuomintang party to continue selling out Taiwan to China," the student said in footage aired by ETTV news channel after he was removed from the scene.

Ma's office said in a statement: "The presidential office respects the expression of opinion rationally but condemns any form of violence." No charges have been filed against the unnamed student.

"Formosa Betrayed", written in 1965 by former US diplomat George Kerr, is popular among Taiwan's pro-independence movement and describes authoritarian rule on the island after Nationalist troops lost the civil war to the Chinese Communists and fled the mainland in 1949.

It was adapted into a Hollywood film in 2009.

Ties between Taiwan and China have improved markedly since Ma took office in 2008 on a platform of boosting cross-strait trade and tourism.

He was re-elected in 2012 for a final four-year term but has been battling to shore up his popularity following a number of controversies, including major student-led protests in Taipei against a trade pact with Beijing earlier this year.

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