(From Reuters)

White Wolf, an ex-criminal gang leader who is running for Taiwan’s parliament, found himself squashed in a lift with a gaggle of young women supporting one of Taiwan’s most famous heavy-metal singers and outspoken China critic, Freddy Lim.

Freddy Lim, a candidate to the 2016 legislative election and singer of death metal band Chthonic, performs during a concert to boost his campaign in Taipei December 26

White Wolf, 67, real name Chang An-lo, who is running for a small party that favours unification with China, told the women Freddy Lim, the long-haired, heavily tattooed, leather-clad singer, was good-looking. The women smiled awkwardly and mumbled “he’s all right” as they waited for the doors to open.

Welcome to the colourful if sometimes weird world of democracy in free-wheeling Taiwan, where video of the elevator exchange did the rounds on social media, a far cry from solemn Communist Party rule in neighbouring China which views the island as a breakaway province to be united eventually, by force if necessary.

Taiwan holds elections next month when it is likely to elect its first woman president who leads an independence-leaning party China loathes, but the race is on for the island’s 113-seat parliament that has activists and ex-convicts bumping up against political heirs and alleged spies. Read More

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