China hails historic visit to Taiwan as 'success'

China's top official in charge of relations with Taiwan has visited the self-ruled island, hailing the trip as "historic", despite violent protests that forced him to cancel several meetings.

A pro-democracy activist scuffles with police officers in Taiwan. Credit: REUTERS/Pichi Chuang

The visit by Zhang Zhijun, director of China's Taiwan Affairs Office, marked the first such trip by such a senior mainland official in 65 years since the Nationalists fled after losing a civil war to China's Communists in 1949.

Falun Gong members take part in a protest as Zhang Zhijun Credit: REUTERS/Pichi Chuang

Throughout his tour of the island, Mr Zhang was greeted by protesters. Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in the pro-independence southern port of Kaohsiung, some waving placards reading "Communist Zhang Zhijun, get the hell back to China".

Zhang Zhijun, director of China's Taiwan Office, meets Taiwan's minister Wang Yu-chi. Credit: REUTERS/Pichi Chuang