The Beijing government must seriously face up to the issues roiling the territory, which is like the situation in Taiwan in 2013 and 2014, because if the public discontent is not properly handled, the problem will not be solved, and demonstrations will continue to and expand into new areas, Ko said.
“Taiwan, being the most advanced Chinese society, offers our experiences for China’s reference,” he said.
“Although they sometimes laugh that our lawmakers fight a lot [inside the Legislative Yuan], but Taiwan’s democratic development over the past three decades was achieved at a relatively lower social cost,” the mayor said.
South Korea’s 1980 Gwangju Democratization Movement — “a modern version of Taiwan’s 228 Massacre — even involved bombs, so Taiwan’s social cost was lower, and although the nation’s democracy is not yet 100 percent, it is generally good,” Ko said.
As for the rumors that the PLA might be deployed to put down the protests, “high-ranking Chinese officials should have the ability to learn from reflecting on history, including the experiences in Taiwan and the Tiananmen Square Massacre, and keep a clear head when thinking about the solutions for Hong Kong,” he said.
“A strong Taiwan can provide more protection to Hong Kong,” because if China thinks Taiwan can be easily defeated, it would not hold back on taking strong measures when tackling Hong Kong’s issues, he said, something he has talked about before.