December 24, 2009 / 2:00 AM / 10 years ago

One hurt, six detained in Taiwan scuffle over China

REFILE - CORRECTING BYLINE Protesters against the cross strait talks between Taiwan and China release sky lanterns outside the venue of the talks in Taichung December 23, 2009. Economic powerhouse China and export-reliant Taiwan, political rivals for six decades, agreed on Tuesday to negotiate a trade deal that would cut tariffs and bring the two sides closer. REUTERS/Pichi Chuang

TAIPEI (Reuters) - A police officer was hurt and six people detained late on Wednesday during a protest against a visit by China’s top negotiator to Taiwan, officials said.

It was the first violence in four days of protests against the visit of Beijing negotiator Chen Yunlin in Taichung, central Taiwan.

Also on Wednesday, protesters tried to stop Chen from visiting a temple, taunting police that have guarded every step of his December 21-25 visit, local media reported.

China has claimed sovereignty over Taiwan since 1949, when Mao Zedong’s forces won the Chinese civil war and Chiang Kai-shek’s Nationalists fled to the island. Beijing has vowed to bring Taiwan under its rule, by force if necessary.

As ties warm under Taiwan’s Beijing-friendly President Ma Ying-jeou, economic powerhouse China and the export-reliant island agreed on Tuesday to negotiate a trade deal that would cut tariffs.

Protesters oppose closer ties between the governments.

Reporting by Ralph Jennings; Editing by David Fox

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