Taiwan presidential election candidates plan closing rallies

Other News Materials 16 March 2008 11:20 (UTC +04:00)

Taiwan's two presidential election candidates are set to launch huge marches and rallies across the island Sunday afternoon to rally support ahead of the March 22 polls. ( dpa )

Frontrunner Ma Ying-jeou, from the opposition Chinese Nationalist Party (Kuomintang or KMT), vowed to mobilize 1 million Taiwanese to hold the "Taiwan March Forward" campaign in cities and towns.

His rival Frank Shieh, from the ruling Democratic Progressive.

Party who lags behind Ma by 10-20 percentage points according to polls, claimed he would also mobilize 1 million supporters to hold marches and rallies across the island.

Analysts said Ma has gained the upper hand in the election campaign because he advocates peace with China to revive Taiwan's deteriorating economy.

Hsieh, whose party is pro-independence, insists Taiwan should safeguard its sovereignty and security while pursuing peace with China.