Thousands to run in Tainan
Nearly 20,000 people from Taiwan and overseas will take part in a run to be held today in Tainan. The World Masters Athletes (WMA) championships, sponsored by China Motor Inc, the Chinese Taipei Road Running Association and the Tainan County Government, will play host to 211 foreign athletes from 36 countries. A total of 19,925 people will take part in the competi-tions, the largest number of countries and athletes to take part in the WMA cham-pionships. Among the athletes will be defending champion Mario Fattore of Italy and Henri Girault of France, who will be taking part in his 500th 100-km race. There will be five runs: 100km, 50km, 25km, 10km and 5km. President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) will preside over the start of the first race and then will run with 2,004 athletes for 1.5km to promote exercise.
Advanced US missiles arrive
The US shipped advanced air-to-air missiles to Taiwan after China acquired similar Russian-built technology, it was reported yesterday. The AIM-120 medium-range air-to-air missiles, which arrived in Taiwan last month, are sufficient to counter China's AA-12 missiles and will help maintain the military balance in the Taiwan Strait, according to the Liberty Times. It said the air force is planning a live-fire test of the missile next year -- the first such tests outside the US. The air force declined to com-ment on the report. The military bought 120 AIM-120s from the US in 2000 on the condition they would only be delivered if China acquired similar weaponry. The fact that China had test-fired the Russian-made AA-12 missiles in June last year prompted Washington to deliver the AIM-120s, the report said. Air force officials have previously said the missiles would be used to arm some of the nation's 150 F-16 fighter jets.
China executes pair
Chinese authorities executed two men on Friday for the murder of a Taiwanese couple and their four year-old daughter, the China News Service reported yesterday. Huang Ligang (黃利剛), 22 and Cheng Liang (程亮), 29, were condemned to death by the Shanghai High Court in April. The men broke into the home of Sun Yu (宋鈺), a business-man living in Shanghai, and stabbed him, his wife and his daughter, the agency said. Huang and Cheng then fled in the couple's jeep, carrying cash and objects valued at over 80,000 yuan (US$9,600).
Cold front arriving
The Central Weather Bureau announced yesterday that a cold front and a light typhoon will jointly bring heavy rains to Keelung, Hengchun, the east coast and mountainous areas of northern Taiwan today and tomorrow. Typhoon Nepartak was moving west-northwest at 21kph from the seas near Manila as of 4pm yesterday. The bureau said it is still trying to figure out what impact it may have on the weather in this country.
Tourism fair at TWTC
The Taipei International Travel Fair opened yesterday at the Taipei World Trade Center with the aim of boosting the tourism sector, which was badly damaged earlier this year by the SARS epidemic. More than 400 organizations from 50 countries and regions around the world are displaying their sightseeing attractions in 538 booths at the fair. The exhibition will run until Tuesday.