Chinese man crosses Taiwan Strait in inflatable boat: yearning for freedom and democracy

A man was arrested at Taichung Harbor yesterday after crossing the Taiwan Strait from Fujian Province, China in an outboard-motor-powered inflatable boat.

Coast Guard officers and harbor police were alerted to the man’s arrival at the Taichung Harbor West Warf at around 2:00 am yesterday.

The 33-year-old man named Zhou said that he is from Sichuan Province and had purchased the boat and motor on Huabao.com for RMB16,000. He also purchased four fuel containers with a capacity of 125 liters. Zhou departed from Shishi City, Fujian Province April 30, and had experienced a smooth journey. Zhou said that he had navigated the 180 kilometer trip using his mobile phone compass.

Lightly dressed, tired, and hungry, workers at the port immediately supplied him with a jacket and some food while waiting for the Coast Guard to arrive.

Zhou said that he had not committed any crimes, and was not a wanted criminal, but had made the dangerous journey because he yearned for freedom and democracy.

Zhou was taken to a detention center for quarantine and will face charges for breaching Article 74 of the Immigration Act.

Chinese man at West Warf, Taichung Harbor
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