At least one person was killed yesterday when a blast ripped through a shelter run by Iraq's main Shiite party, a day after a US general warned that insurgent attacks against Iraqi targets were mounting and Washington announced it would pour more troops into the country. \nMeanwhile, Iraqis are insisting on trying former president Saddam Hussein in his own country and with their own judges, as several countries prepare their complaints against the former dictator US forces captured on Dec. 13. \n"All the Governing Council members agree that Saddam must be tried in Iraq by Iraqi judges," Hamid al-Kifai, spokesman for the US-appointed transitional council, said yesterday. \nHe said that council members were currently talking about the set-up of the court that will try the ousted president, adding that judges would be chosen as quickly as possible. \nKifai also said that Saddam "was still undergoing questioning by the Americans," who would subsequently hand him over to Iraqi authorities. \n"The hearing will be public. We want it to reveal everything that happened," he said, emphasizing that "Saddam committed crimes against the Iraqi people. He killed three million Iraqis and forced two million more into exile." \nThe pre-dawn bombing of the homeless shelter run by the Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), killed a woman and injured eight, a relative of the victim and an official said. \nThe building collapsed onto families sleeping in the west Baghdad compound, which also houses a religious school. \nIn other news, the American administrator of Iraq, Paul Bremer, escaped a rebel ambush on his convoy Dec. 6, the day of a visit by US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, a spokesman for Bremer said yesterday. \nBremer was riding in an armored civilian vehicle when a roadside bomb exploded and guerrillas attacked with small arms fire, said Dan Senor, a spokesman for the US-led coalition that oversees Iraq. \nThe convoy sped off and no one was injured in the attack, which took place on a stretch of highway in west Baghdad near the airport.
NPP WARNING: The NPP’s chairman said that a security law proposed by Beijing means it has renounced its promise to maintain ‘one country, two systems’ in HK The Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) yesterday proposed changing the law to provide protection for those seeking political asylum. China at the opening of the National People’s Congress in Beijing on Thursday introduced a draft security law for Hong Kong to ban treason, subversion and sedition, with a review expected next week. TPP caucus whip Jang Chyi-lu (張其祿) said that the party is concerned about democracy advocates in Hong Kong and has taken action to support them. The party has proposed an amendment to Article 18 of the Act Governing Relations with Hong Kong and Macau (香港澳門關係條例), which stipulates that the government can offer
The number of people from Hong Kong applying for residency in Taiwan last year rose 41 percent from a year earlier to 5,858, National Immigration Agency statistics showed. The statistics also showed that 600 applications were filed by Hong Kong residents in the first quarter of this year — three times the number filed in the same period last year — with applicants apparently not deterred by the COVID-19 pandemic. Just one day after it was reported that the Chinese government plans to enact new national security laws in Hong Kong, inquiries regarding immigration to Taiwan grew 10-fold, a Hong Kong-based immigration
‘BEGINNING OF THE END’: Democracy advocate Joshua Wong urged Hong Kongers to stand up and fight, and let the Chinese government know that they will not cave Hong Kong protesters yesterday battled with riot police in busy downtown areas, showing their opposition toward China’s dramatic move to crack down on dissent in the biggest demonstration since the coronavirus swept through the territory in January. Police deployed a water cannon and fired tear gas in the Causeway Bay shopping area after hundreds of protesters had gathered to oppose new national security legislation from China. Police warned the crowd they were taking part in an illegal gathering, and later said in a statement that “rioters threw umbrellas, water bottles and other objects at them.” At least 120 people were arrested,
‘TAIWAN IS SAFE’: As there have been no new local cases for 42 days, people should feel free to travel around the nation — as long as they follow disease prevention rules No new cases of COVID-19 were reported yesterday and only 20 of the people hospitalized after testing positive are still being treated in hospitals, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said yesterday in Pingtung County’s Kenting (墾丁) as he promoted a “new disease prevention lifestyle” for the nation. As yesterday was the 42nd consecutive day with no new domestic cases, and experts consider 28 consecutive days with no domestic case — the span of two incubation periods — a sign that a community is relatively safe, Taiwan is safe, said Chen, who heads the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC),