Fri, Mar 07, 2003 - Page 4 News List

Chinese brides concern lawmakers

By Chang Yun-Ping  /  STAFF REPORTER

DPP Legislator Chien Chao-tong urges the government at a press conference yesterday to investigate the unusually high number of remarriages among Chinese brides married to Taiwanese.

PHOTO: SEAN CHAO, TAIPEI TIMES

Legislators yesterday urged the government to investigate the high rates of remarriage among female immigrants from China, citing an example of two Chinese brides who have each married nine times.

DPP Legislator Chien Chao-tong (簡肇棟) questioned the unusually high number of remarriages among Chinese brides, saying that more than 3,000 of them have married at least three times .

Chien said the motivation of these Chinese brides is suspicious as a large number of them are married to military veterans of the Chinese Civil War and World War II, who came to Taiwan with the KMT government when it retreated to Taiwan after defeat in the Chinese civil war of 1949.

"Some of them might be involved in fake marriages. Some of them might be married for the old veterans' money. All these things could possibly happen, as we know that many Chinese `brides' really come to Taiwan to work as prostitutes," Chien said.

Chinese nationals can obtain Taiwan residence permits on the strength of marriage to a Taiwan national.

Chien said the statistics have shown that two Chinese brides topped the number of marriages with nine each, followed by three Chinese brides who have married eight times. Chien also revealed that there are 491 who have married four times and 3,000 who have married three times.

Legislator Tang Huo-shen (湯火聖) yesterday said the main reason behind the high number of marriages by Chinese brides is because of the death of their Taiwanese husbands.

"Nearly 8,000 out of the total 12,000 veterans in Taiwan have married Chinese brides, half of which are under the age of 40," Tang said, adding, "Judging from these figures, we could anticipate a high remarriage ratio of brides."

Citing figures from the Ministry of the Interior, Tang said as of the end of last year, the total number of Chinese brides in Taiwan is about 154,000, with numbers estimated to rise to 400,000 by 2016.

In a reference to an oft-voiced concern about immigration from China -- that large numbers of naturalized immigrants from China could exert a pro-China influence on Taiwan's politics and even jeopardize national security -- he said that such a large number of people "is bound to play a role in the election of the president," so the authorities should attach importance to the matter.

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