Fri, May 07, 2004 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan Quick Take

STAFF WRITER WITH AGENCIES

■ TourismEnglish hotline launched

A new 24-hour tourism hotline was launched this month as part of the Bureau of Tourism's plans to boost tourism information throughout the country. The "call center" will provide travel information in Mandarin, Japanese and English and can be reached toll-free at 0800-011-765. In addition, the bureau is planning to expand its network of buses which transports travelers from hotels to popular tourism destinations. Current destinations include Sun Moon Lake in Nantou County, Chinkuashih in Taipei County and Kenting National Park. The bureau plans to add at least four new routes.

■ Health

No tests for inauguration

The Center for Disease Control yesterday announced that temperature readings would not be required for those participating in the presidential inauguration on May 20. Due to a recent resurgence of SARS in Beijing, authorities had originally planned to make temperature readings at

the inauguration mandatory. Center for Disease Control director Su Ih-jen (蘇益仁) said that, in terms of preventing any local SARS outbreak, last week was a crucial time and that the disease had since been brought under control. As a result, health authorities have decided not to take temperature readings at the inauguration, but have warned that people returning to Taiwan from Beijing or Anhui should refrain from participating in the ceremony. The presidential inauguration is expected to host about 200,000 guests.

■ Health

Enterovirus cases down

Seven cases of acute enterovirus infections have been reported so far this year, all of them in central and southern Taiwan, an official of the Department of Health said yesterday. Wu Ping-huei (吳炳輝), from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), said that the first six cases occurred in central Taiwan, while the latest one was in Tainan County at the end of last month -- a four-year-old boy who suffered from fever, ulcers at the corners of his mouth, and vomiting and rashes. He has since recovered. Wu said that the number of cases is low compared with the same period last year, which saw 41 serious enterovirus cases. Tseng Shu-hui, director of the CDC's branch in southern Taiwan, said that officials still don't know why serious cases of enterovirus are occuring in the center of the country.

■ Diplomacy

`Chinese Taipei' is no more

"Chinese Taipei" is not a feasible title for Taiwan when applying to join international organizations, Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Richard Shih (石瑞琦) said yesterday. Shih was responding to media reports that "Chinese Taipei" was one of five options when applying for seats in international organizations. "The report is not right," Shih said, adding that "Chinese Taipei" had not been included in a shortlist of preferred options. Because of Beijing's diplomatic embargo, Taiwan has been unable

to join major international organizations or activities under its official title, the Republic of China (ROC). With a view to protecting national dignity while striving to expand its presence in the international arena, Shih said the foreign ministry had come up with five titles to suit the requirements of different organizations at different times. The five preferred options were, in order of preference, "Republic of China," "Taiwan," "Taiwan, ROC," "ROC (Taiwan)" and "Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu (TPKM)," Shih said.

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