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Page last updated at 08:35 GMT, Sunday, 17 May 2009 09:35 UK

Taiwanese march against president

Taiwan's former Vice-President Annette Lu, centre, leads thousands of opposition protesters in a mass rally in Taipei, Taiwan, 17 May 2009
Tens of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Taipei

Thousands of opposition supporters have taken to the streets in Taiwan to protest against President Ma Ying-jeou's policy of engagement with China.

Nationalist critics argue the policies threaten to undermine the island's self-rule.

Democratic Progressive Party Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen led marching protesters to the president's office in Taipei.

The demonstration came ahead of the first anniversary on Wednesday of the president's coming to power.

He has also said he will abandon his predecessor's anti-Chinese policies, a position which the opposition says weakens Taiwan's sovereignty.

After Sunday's march, participants were expected to hold a sit-in protest for another 24 hours to mark their opposition to government policies.

Beijing claims sovereignty over Taiwan, which split from the mainland at the end of the Chinese civil war in 1949.

Relations between the two have improved since Mr Ma's election last year.



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