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Home Editorials of Interest Articles of Interest Taiwan's democracy radio Ocean Voice raided by ROC police third time this year

Taiwan's democracy radio Ocean Voice raided by ROC police third time this year

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The Voice of Ocean Taiwan, 95.9 FM in Taichung, Taiwan was again shut down from broadcasting following a police raid to the station’s Shin-Ser tower for the second time this month.

The Republic of China in-exile five times has refused to grant the pro-Taiwan independence Ocean Voice radio station a license to operate despite the empty frequency Ocean Voice uses. Ocean Voice Executive Director James Chang explains why the station has operated 15 years without a license.

“They don’t even bother to turn us down, tbey just toss our applications in the trash without a formal response.”

Former ROC President Chen Shui-bian says the bureaucracy kept him uninformed of Ocean Voice’s plight while he was in office.

“A number of democracy radio stations had been granted license during my administration. I was unaware of Ocean Voice’s problem.”

Last year four arrests of staff members failed to keep the station off the air and the arrests are currently under appeal. This year the ROC decided on another tactic to stop the broadcasts, seize equipment. At the end of February the police raided the Ocean Voice transmitter at Kellong putting it off the air.

On April 13th, the day following an exclusive Examiner report on the remarkable radio station, the ROC raided the Shin-Ser transmitter serving the Taichung area. Ocean Voice staff members raced to four other remote mountain-top sites and rescued broadcasting equipment ahead of ROC raiding parties.

Moving equipment to Taichung the station resumed its pro-democracy broadcasting on Taiwan’s airwaves. Then suddenly on April 24th the police raided again seizing for the second time in two weeks NT $900,000 worth of equipment.

Ocean Voice is back to internet-only broadcasts of its talk-radio and news format while station management considers the next course of action.

After the Kellong raid the station presented the Republic of China in-exile officials with a declaration the station intended to continue with its pro-democracy programming.

The raids against Ocean Voice recall the days, not so long ago, under ROC martial law when magazines and newspapers also suffered repressive measures including confiscations and arrests.

James Chang vows to continue efforts to keep Ocean Voice on the air.

“The work of democracy must be done.”

See link for Ocean Voice radio website: http://www.oceanvoice.org.tw

Source: Taiwan Policy Examiner - Michael Richardson

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