■ Culture Delegation at Paris show \n \nA Taiwanese delegation, composed of 26 food companies and agricultural associations, is participating in the Salon International de I'Alimentation (SIAL 2004) in Paris, officials of Taiwan's Trade Center in Paris said yesterday. The SIAL 2004, one of the largest interna-tional food shows in the world, began Sunday and will run until Oct. 21, attracting more than 5,200 food-related companies from 98 countries. In addition to presenting their best food products at the exhibition, the Taiwanese enterprises will also hold sampling activities to introduce Taiwan's fruits and tea products. The officials noted that Taiwan agricultural products can tap the Euro-pean market through the food show in France, a major trade center in the EU. \n \n■ Sports \nRussian wins marathon \n \nAzat Rakipov from Russia won the men's 42km marathon in Taiwan yester-day, collecting the top prize of US$25,000 (NT$850,000). Starting at a downtown park and weaving through Taipei's streets, Rakipov finished with a time of 2:23:40. Trailing behind was Kenya's Otavio dos Santos Pinheire who finished at 2:24:12. In the women's 42km marathon, Wu Xiuying from Mongolia, China, grabbed first place with a time of 2:39:35, claiming US$15,000 (NT$510,000). Wu collapsed from exhaustion after crossing the finish line. Organizers said she was rushed to the hospital, where she remained in stable condition. Second place went to Tanzania's Fabiola William who finished at 2:41:53. More than 30,000 people participated in the marathon organized by Taiwan's China Motors. \n \n■ Society \nRotary honors 175 people \n \nRotary International District 3480 bestowed citations to individuals around Taiwan yesterday to celebrate in advance the 100th anniversary of Rotary International, which will fall on Feb. 1 next year. At the ceremony, held jointly by Rotary International District 3480 and 48 other Rotary Clubs in the greater Taipei area, 175 people coming from many different walks of life, including volunteers, teachers, environmentalists, firemen, public servants and journalists received citations. It was the first time that journalists were given the honor by the Rotary Clubs in Taiwan, and among them were Central News Agency President Hu Yuan-hui and Apple Daily Taiwan President James Tu. Vice Minister of the Interior Lee Chin-yung, Vice Minister of Education Fan Sun-lu and Taipei City Deputy Mayor King Pu-tsung (金溥聰) attended the ceremony, hailing the citation recipients for contributing significantly to society. \n \n■ Education \nMOE says English important \n \nEducation Minister Tu Cheng-sheng (杜正勝) said yesterday that Taiwan's development will be limited if people in the country do not strengthen their English ability. Tu made the remarks at a seminar held in Taipei on ethnic groups and cultural development. As the "new Taiwan citizen movement" is one of the issues being discussed at the seminar, some participants maintained that mother languages of each ethnic group should be given priority over English. They suggested that the govern-ment should not promote English education too early for kids. Concerning such suggestions, Tu stressed that English is the channel to the world community, and the essence of Taiwan culture cannot be accepted and understood by the world without it. \n■ Politics Lu warns about China \n \nChina's threat against Taiwan is growing with around 800 ballistic missiles estimated to be targeting the nation by next year, Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) said yesterday. Addressing a rally of the Democratic Progressive Party's women members in Taoyuan, Lu said that China already has 610 missiles ready to strike Taiwan. And according to national security agencies, more than 3,000 Chinese visitors have disappeared after arriving in Taiwan, posing another threat to security, she said. Lu called on the public to stay alert for any possible trouble by mysterious visitors from China. She also urged the public to support the party in the year-end legislative elections to allow it to hold a majority in the legislature and thus increase the government's efficiency. \n \n■ Business \nWomen recognized \n \nThe Global Federation of Chinese Business Women (GFCBW) bestowed awards yesterday to 10 excellent Chinese business women chosen from around the world. Vice President Lu was among the guests to offer the awards to the winners, who were chosen from 27 countries. A GFCBW executive noted that more and more women should share the economic pressure in the families with their husbands, and thus pushing them to excel in the workplace. More and more Chinese women have performed well in various sectors, such as trade, media, education, law, medicine, government and charity, she said. The organization now has 32 branches around the world and has been dedicated during the years to charitable activities and economic and trade information exchanges throughout the world.
FOSSIL CLUES: The bushfires resulted from a positive Indian Ocean dipole event, when the region east of the ocean becomes drier, professor Shen Chuan-chou said The bushfires that swept through Australia last year were connected to a phenomenon known as the Indian Ocean dipole (IOD), which is expected to become more frequent due to climate change, a geologist studying coral fossils said yesterday. National Taiwan University Department of Geosciences professor Shen Chuan-chou (沈川洲) since 2001 has been working with Australian and US researchers to study climate systems in the Indian Ocean. Led by Australian National University Research School of Earth Sciences professor Nerilie Abram, the team published a paper on IOD in the journal Nature on March 9. The bushfires resulted from a positive IOD event, when the
Senior judges yesterday met to discuss the constitutionality of a law that makes adultery a criminal offense, before being ordered by Judicial Yuan President Hsu Tzong-li (許宗力) to set a date for a constitutional interpretation within the next month. The judges met to discuss Article 239 of the Criminal Code on offenses against marriage and family, after 18 judges had called for a constitutional interpretation of the issue. Taipei District Court Judge Lin Meng-huang (林孟皇) said that while he had previously tried adultery cases and never questioned the law, his feelings changed when trying a case last year involving baseball star Wang
Instead of hating the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), help change it, KMT Chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣) said, as he urged young people to join efforts to reform the party. As the nation marked Youth Day on Sunday, Chiang said in a Facebook post that he wanted to remind people that “the KMT used to be very young.” Now, when people think of the KMT, they equate it with older people, he wrote. “Even if [the KMT] is a 100-year-old party, it must maintain a young mentality, and understand what young people want and what they want the KMT to do,” Chiang wrote.
A survey has found that 37.3 percent of transgender people in the nation have experienced gender-related discrimination or bullying in the workplace, the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights said yesterday. The alliance’s survey showed that 55.41 percent of transgender people said that they had been afraid to use a public restroom, 18.53 percent had been harassed or attacked in public, while 15.83 percent had been afraid to ask a police officer or other professional for help. The survey, conducted from March 14 to Wednesday last week, was based on 518 valid responses from transgender people aged 14 to 78, the