Friday, March 19, 2004
TAIWANESE PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT ARE SHOT BUT NOT FATALLY. (Thanks to James Joyner for the link)
Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian and his vice president were wounded Friday after at least one bullet was fired at them while campaigning on the eve of an election that has deeply divided the island and angered authorities in mainland China.It is far too early to speculate about who is responsible and which way this will influence tomorrow's election. But can you imagine what would have happened had the shooter actual killed Chen?
Chen was shot across the abdomen and Vice President Annette Lu was struck in the right knee as they stood in an open-roof sport utility vehicle waving at crowds lining the streets of the southern city of Tainan, the president's hometown.
The injuries were not life-threatening and neither Chen nor Lu lost consciousness or required surgery, officials said. The Reuters news agency said they were released from the hospital several hours later
Authorities said there were no immediate arrests and declined to speculate on a possible motive for the attack. The apparent assassination attempt occurred as the crowds were setting off firecrackers in celebration, and officials said Chen and Lu did not immediately realize they had been shot.
"The vice president first felt pain in her knee, and she thought it was caused by firecrackers," said Chiou I-Jen, one of Chen's top advisers. "Then the president felt some wetness on his abdomen area, and then they realized something was wrong."