Wed, Jul 04, 2018 - Page 1 News List

Tsai confers medal on AIT head

‘SECOND HOME’:The president told outgoing AIT Director Kin Moy there are many places in the nation that look forward to him visiting again

By Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporter

President Tsai Ing-wen, right, raises a glass of wine with outgoing American Institute in Taiwan Director Kin Moy, center, and his wife, Kathy Chen, after presenting him with the Order of Brilliant Star at the Presidential Office Building in Taipei yesterday.
Warning: Excessive consumption of alcohol can damage your health.

Photo: CNA

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday conferred the Order of Brilliant Star on outgoing American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Director Kin Moy as recognition of his contribution to Taiwan-US ties.

At a ceremony at the Presidential Office Building in Taipei, Tsai awarded Moy the second-highest level of the Order of Brilliant Star, which is given to civil servants, non-civil servants and foreign nationals for remarkable dedication.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) last month conferred on Moy the Grand Medal of Diplomacy, the highest honor Taiwan gives to an individual for diplomatic contributions.

Tsai said that when Moy took office three years ago, he set three goals: building trust with the Taiwanese government, showing Taiwanese that the US is Taiwan’s best friend and completing the construction of the AIT’s new compound in Taipei’s Neihu District (內湖).

“I believe Director Moy has achieved all three goals,” Tsai said.

During his tenure, Moy also proved himself to be the best friend of Taiwan, she said, citing the AIT head’s close interactions with local government officials and the trips he made to many parts of Taiwan, as well as the creative way in which he has engaged the public through Facebook.

“Director Moy is set to leave his post later this month, and I know his one regret is that he has not been able to visit Kinmen,” Tsai said. “I want to tell him that, other than Kinmen, there are many parts of Taiwan that look forward to him visiting again.”

“Taiwan will always be your second home,” she added.

In his speech, Moy attributed achievements in Taiwan-US relations over the past three years to the hard work of AIT staff, who he said were instrumental in helping him fulfill his vision for ties between Washington and Taipei.

Moy said AIT staff are the reason he is confident that the US’ partnership with Taiwan will continue to prosper long after his departure.

He then jokingly said that as he would soon be out of a job, he has talked to Tsai about pulling some strings to help him secure the position of National Taiwan University president.

The university’s presidency has been dogged by controversies for months due to the Ministry of Education’s refusal to confirm the school’s nomination of former National Development Council minister Kuan Chung-ming (管中閔) as its president, citing the university’s failure to avoid conflicts of interest in the election process.

Moy is to be succeeded by former AIT deputy director Brent Christensen this summer, but the AIT has yet to announce when Christensen is to take office.

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