Sat, Feb 15, 2003 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan quick take

STAFF WRITER WITH AGENCIES

Cross-strait ties

Business safety a concern

The personal safety of Tai-wanese businesspeople working in China is being increasingly threatened amid a decline in public order there, the Straits Exchange Foundation said yesterday. The foundation said that as of the end of last year, it had received 592 complaints of intimidation against Tai-wanese businesspeople in China last year. Foundation officials said the figure represents only the tip of the iceberg and is an indication of growing social insecurity in China. The officials said that the personal safety of Taiwanese businesspeople based in China is not helped by the fact that many of them break the law there, some intentionally but others because they lack an understanding of the Chinese legal system. For instance, they pointed out, most Taiwanese business-people detained or arrested in China are usually charged with violations of Chinese tax laws, carrying prohibited political publications or being involved in business disputes and false marriages.

Travel

Ministry issues warning

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday issued a travel warning for Iraq, Israel and Palestinian-controlled territories as a result of the buildup of US and British forces in the Gulf region. The ministry also advised Tai-wanese to either leave or defer non-essential travel to areas near Iraq, including Kuwait, Yemen and south-eastern Turkey, the ministry said in a statement. People who plan to travel to Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Qatar and Turkey should exercise extreme caution during their trips, the ministry warned. Taiwanese travelers in need of help should contact Taipei's representative offices in these countries or neighboring countries without hesitation, the ministry said. The latest updates on travel warnings from the ministry can be found on the Internet on a government Web site (http:

//www.boca.gov.tw).

Environment

Officials to get dump tour

Taiwan Power Co will arrange for Taitung County Councilors to travel to Europe to visit low-grade nuclear waste dump sites next month, company officials said yesterday.

The officials said 30 councilors will travel to eastern and northern Europe beginning March 15 to visit various nuclear waste facilities and observe their operations. Taipower has listed Nantien Village, Taren Township in Taitung County as a possible dump site for its nuclear waste because the area meets conditions set by the Atomic Energy Council -- a sparsely-populated area with little development potential and without geological formations that could threaten the safety of the facilities.

Diplomacy

Panamanian group arriving

Carlos Alvarado, the president of Panama's Legislative Assembly, is slated to lead a 13-member delegation that arrives tomorrow for a five-day visit, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday. Accompanied by his wife, the Panamanian official will meet President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and call on Legislative Yuan speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平), said the statement. They will also visit the Center for Chinese Language and Culture Studies of the National Normal University, the National Museum of Pre-history, Hsinchu Science-based Industrial Park and other cultural and economic establishments. The dele-gation will leave Taipei on Feb. 20.

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