Pingpu Aboriginal activists have filed a request to the UN, asking it to launch an investigation into the Taiwanese government's refusal to grant them official Aboriginal status.
“To [this] date, the government and the Council of Indigenous Peoples [CIP] still deny the Pingpu people of their history and refuse to register their ethnic group status, saying that they are not indigenous peoples,” said a letter in English addressed to the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and fundamental freedoms of indigenous peoples, James Anaya.
The letter was written by Jason Pan (潘紀揚), director of the Taiwan Association for Rights Advancements for Pingpu Plains Aborigines, on behalf of a number of Pingpu rights groups.
The Pingpu used to live in the plains areas of Taiwan.
They were recognized as Aborigines until the 1950s, when they failed to register their ethnic status with local governments and have been struggling to regain the status in recent decades.
Pingpu activists have taken to the streets several times and filed a lawsuit against the government last month. The petition to the UN is the latest move.
In the letter, Pan cited historical documents from the Dutch, Portuguese and Japanese to show that the Pingpu tribe has been in existence since at least the 17th century.
He also gave detailed accounts of actions that the Pingpu have taken to regain their Aboriginal status as well the government's responses.
“The letter was sent on April 16, and received a confirmation of reception from Anaya on April 28,” Pan told a press conference at the legislature yesterday. “There may be political issues since Taiwan is not a member of the UN, but indigenous issues should not be limited by national boundaries.”
Siraya Culture Association Chairwoman Uma Talavan voiced support for Pan's action.
“Every time when we make a move, that's another chance for our voice to be heard,” Talavan said.
‘NO EQUILIBRIUM’: Taiwan’s increased defense spending is a good step, but it needs to do more to have the ability to deter aggression from China, a senior US official said The US plans to sell as many as seven major weapons systems — including mines, cruise missiles and drones — to Taiwan, four people familiar with the discussions said. Pursuing seven sales at once is a rare departure from years of precedent in which US military sales to Taiwan were spaced out and carefully calibrated to minimize tensions with Beijing. However, US President Donald Trump’s administration has this year become more aggressive with China, and the sales would land as relations between Beijing and Washington are at their lowest point in decades over accusations of spying, lingering trade tensions, disputes about the
CLOSE ENCOUNTERS: Several of the PLA fighter jets that crossed the median line of the Strait came within 68km of Hsinchu, drawing warnings from Taiwan, the ministry said At least 18 Chinese military aircraft yesterday flew into the nation’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on the second day of a US delegation’s visit, the Ministry of National Defense said, adding that the military responded by deploying an air defense missile system to monitor their activities. A delegation led by US Undersecretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment Keith Krach on Thursday started a three-day visit to Taiwan. The ministry from Thursday started publicizing the actions of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in Taiwan’s ADIZ on its Web site and Twitter. According to ministry reports, 18 PLA aircraft
ON THEIR OWN: The KMT has decided not to participate as a party at this year’s forum, and if any members do go, they would not be representing the party, Alicia Wang said The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) yesterday announced that it would not send a delegation “as a political party” to this year’s Straits Forum, after a Chinese TV program described the planned visit to the annual meeting as “suing for peace.” The 12th forum is scheduled to open in Xiamen, China, on Saturday. On Tuesday last week, the KMT announced that former legislative speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) would lead the party’s delegation to the forum, with KMT Secretary-General Lee Chien-lung (李乾龍) as deputy head. However, on Thursday last week, China Central Television’s (CCTV) Yangshipin (央視頻) program, hosted by Li Hong (李紅), included a headline
WORKING OVERTIME? NTU professor Lee Duu-jong denied that he had held a part-time position at a Chinese university or joined China’s Thousand Talents Program A candidate for the post of National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (NTUST) president yesterday dropped out of the race following a report questioning his links to Chinese academia and government programs. Lee Duu-jong (李篤中), a professor at National Taiwan University’s (NTU) chemical engineering department, was a member of China’s Changjiang Scholars’ Program in 2006 and was on the list of its Thousand Talents Program in 2017, a report by Chinese-language Mirror Media magazine said yesterday. The article said that Lee is suspected of having held a part-time job at the Harbin Institute of Technology in China and was the recipient