On May 9, Taiwanese and Tibetan married couples held up signs with slogans such as “Please don’t break up my family, grant my Tibetan husband the right of abode” and “Evil law, a Mother’s Day spent weeping,” in a protest outside the Executive Yuan. Accompanied by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators Chen Chieh-ju and Tien Chiu-chin, they urged the government to annul its policy of writing “no right of abode” on visas that are issued to Tibetans, and to give Tibetan spouses in Taiwan a permanent right of residency. The Cabinet responded by saying that an interagency meeting would be held within a month to discuss how the issue is to be resolved.
Tien says the Ministry of Foreign Affairs claims it is not a discriminatory policy, and that the reason Tibetans in exile cannot be granted the right of abode, despite being married to a Taiwanese citizen, is that they come to Taiwan using “Yellow Books,” which are basically travel visas issued by the Indian government.
One Tibetan spouse who attended the protest said that being unable to apply for residency status, having to leave the country every six months, being unable to work and not having health insurance, on top of having to spend NT$60,000 on travel expenses and processing fees every time he has to leave, is a heavy burden for his family.
(Liberty Times, Translated by Kyle Jeffcoat)
1. spouse n.
配偶 (pei4 ou3)
例: Her spouse died in a terrible car accident three years ago.
2. resolve v.
解決 (jie3 jue2)
例: Let’s quickly resolve this so we can move on to the more important issues at hand.
3. visa n.
簽證 (qian1 zheng4)
例: You will be given an on-arrival visa when you arrive in Hong Kong.