Two DPP city councilors questioned the true colors of Taipei City Mayor Ma Ying-jeou (
City councilors Duan Yi-kang (
In the lead up to the AFC Women's Championship, held from Dec. 4 to 11, Ma asked soccer fans not to bring the national flag to the games. That upset many Taiwanese, who brought the flags to games in protest.
At a press conference yesterday, fans who attended the games said it was unfair that Taiwanese weren't allowed to wave their national flag at a sporting event held in Taipei.
"In the stadium, policemen came over and forcefully tried to snatch away my flag," said one of the fans, who wished to remain anonymous. "They ended up breaking the pole off my flag."
The tournament was held in accordance with the rules of the International Olympic Committee, which bars fans from displaying flags of countries that are not members of the organization. Taiwan participates in the Olympics under the name "Chinese Taipei" and has a separate flag for Olympic events.
"The [policemen] told us that by waving the flag we were doing harm to our country," said another fan at the press conference. "That was ridiculous and very disappointing to hear from a government official."
Officials have argued that if the flag isn't banned at international sporting matches in Taiwan, China will pressure event organizers not to hold tournaments in Taiwan.
"It's incredibly frustrating. We are not allowed to wave our national flag in our own country, but the Chinese can wave their flag," another fan said.
Duan said the city government had ignored a statement issued by the National Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, which said that "fans who want to carry their national flag into the stadium must be allowed to do so under Olympic rules."
The councilors said that Ma had compromised Taiwan's dignity and forced policemen to act like "servants of China."
Ma said he was simply following requirements set by the Chinese Taipei Soccer Association, which follows Olympic rules. "The city government had no other motive than to maintain order."
ON ALERT: A woman who tested positive for COVID-19 while abroad last year tested negative twice in Taiwan before showing a positive result on Sunday, the center said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported two locally transmitted COVID-19 infections, four imported cases and no deaths. The CECC meanwhile warned nearly 500 people to monitor their health after a woman tested postive. The center also reported that a previous local case — a female worker at Taoyuan International Airport Services (桃園航勤), who had the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 — likely contracted the disease from the same source as a previous imported case from Turkey. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that the two local cases were reported in Taipei, and are a
The Lithuanian Ministry of National Defense recommended that consumers avoid buying Chinese mobile phones and advised people to throw away the ones they have now after a government report found the devices had built-in censorship capabilities. Flagship phones sold in Europe by China’s smartphone giant Xiaomi Corp (小米) have a built-in ability to detect and censor terms such as “Free Tibet,” “Long live Taiwan independence” or “democracy movement,” Lithuania’s state-run cybersecurity body said on Tuesday. The capability in Xiaomi’s Mi 10T 5G phone software had been turned off for the “European Union region,” but can be turned on remotely at any time,
CLOSED DOORS? The new US rules, which are to be implemented in November, have sparked concern in Taiwan, given its low fully vaccinated coverage rate The US plans to allow entry to most foreign air travelers as long as they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 — while adding a testing requirement for unvaccinated Americans and barring entry for foreigners who have not received shots. The measures announced on Monday by the White House mark the most sweeping change to US travel policies in months, and widen the gap in rules between vaccinated people — who would see restrictions relaxed — and unvaccinated people. The new rules would replace existing bans on foreigners’ travel to the US from certain regions, including Europe. While the move would open the
CLOSE COOPERATION: A House of Representatives bill suggests inviting Taiwan’s navy to participate in the world’s largest international maritime military exercises The US House of Representatives on Thursday passed its annual defense policy bill, which includes provisions recommending that Taiwan be included in next year’s Rim of the Pacific Exercise (RIMPAC) and enhanced cooperation between Taiwan and the US National Guard. The House approved the US$777.9 billion National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022 in a 316-113 vote. The 1,390-page bill includes three major provisions related to Taiwan under sections 1243, 1247 and 1248. Section 1248 recommends that the US invite Taiwan’s navy to participate in next year’s RIMPAC. Taiwan has never been invited to participate in the event, which is the world’s largest