Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Taiwan leader calls China envoy's trip a success

As protesters battled police, Taiwan's leader shook hands and exchanged gifts Thursday with the most senior Communist Chinese official to visit the island, declaring the envoy's trip a success but saying that major disputes still exist.

The historic meeting came five hours earlier than planned to avoid chaotic demonstrations by Taiwan independence groups that threatened to besiege the capital. Hundreds of riot police shut down streets around the venue with barricades wrapped with barbed wire.

During the five-minute meeting, Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou praised a landmark agreement signed by the rivals Tuesday. The deal increases aviation and shipping …

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