As the administration of George W. Bush debates whether to renew its condemnation of China's human rights record, Secretary of State Colin Powell met Thursday with Mary Robinson, the UN high commissioner for human rights. \nRobinson has voiced concerns about China's violations of political and religious expression, particularly its treatment of members of the outlawed Falun Gong spiritual movement. The Bush administration, meanwhile, has yet to decide how it will vote next month on the annual UN resolution condemning China's human rights practices. \nPowell told Robinson during the get-acquainted meeting that he and Bush believe in "upholding standards of human rights" and maintaining "the policies that demonstrate American concern for human rights," said State Department spokesman Richard Boucher. \nAs for China, Powell reviewed his meeting last month with the Chinese ambassador. He discussed the "overall relationship" between the nations but "also made clear that we would continue to press human rights concerns," Boucher said. \nSo far, the Bush administration has avoided an all-out condemnation of China's record on human rights as it seeks an active trading partnership with the nation. But the administration must drop such caution when it weighs in March 19 before the UN Human Rights Commission in Switzerland. \nThe US traditionally backs the resolution condemning China, but Powell said the administration has not decided how it will vote this year. \n"We'll make a judgment as to whether we will or will not support [a resolution] in due course," he said last weekend. \n"But I think you will find that whatever we do or not do in Geneva will be consistent with the principles of human rights and our support for human rights through the world," Powell added.
There was a net reduction last year in the number of Taipei residents and this year is expected to set a 23-year high for population decline in the city, Ministry of the Interior statistics released yesterday showed. From January to last month, 18,861 more people moved out of Taipei than moved into the capital, an increase of 7,000 from the same period last year, the data showed. That is a 7.2 percent decrease in the city’s population since the start of the year, the biggest drop in both percentage and total number among all municipalities and counties nationwide, the data showed. The data
COUNCILS CLASH: The Mainland Affairs Council said a new office in Hong Kong is to assist people with issues related to investment, study and employment in Taiwan The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) yesterday denied an accusation by the Hong Kong-Taiwan Economic and Cultural Co-operation and Promotion Council that its Taiwanese counterpart in the territory was “interfering with Hong Kong’s internal affairs.” The Hong Kong council leveled the accusation after Taipei’s Taiwan-Hong Kong Economic and Cultural Co-operation Council this month announced it would establish a Taiwan-Hong Kong Services and Exchanges Office to facilitate humanitarian aid for Hong Kongers. The new office is scheduled to begin operations on Wednesday. The MAC yesterday asked the Hong Kong council to “not misinterpret” the government’s intentions. The two Taiwan-Hong Kong councils were established in 2010 to
IRRESPONSIBLE ATTITUDES? Some experts say the NHI system does not do enough to educate the public, or pay doctors to talk to patients, about healthy lifestyles While the life expectancy of Taiwanese newborns in 2018 reached 80.69 years, the number of years people spent in poor health hit a record high at 8.41 years, Ministry of Health and Welfare statistics showed on Saturday. Healthy life expectancy is calculated by a person’s life expectancy minus the time they spend in ill health, such as the loss of mobility, disabilities and chronic disease, based on medical records and calculations about the years they live with disabilities. The number of years that Taiwanese spend in poor health is increasing slowly, but steadily, rising by 0.46 years, or five-and-a-half months, between 2012
UPTICK IN NUMBERS: The Taipei deputy mayor said the city has services to assist new immigrants, but has established an office specifically to help those from Hong Kong The Taiwan-Hong Kong Services and Exchanges Office today officially opens, where it is to provide humanitarian assistance to Hong Kongers, after Beijing yesterday passed a controversial national security law for the territory. President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) expressed dismay over China’s passage of the law, saying that Beijing has broken its pledge to allow Hong Kong to maintain a high degree of autonomy for at least 50 years following its handover from the UK. “I feel extremely disappointed [about the law’s passage], which means China did not keep its promise to Hong Kong,” Tsai said in Taipei. Beijing’s “broken promise” also