Wed, Feb 16, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan Quick Take


■ Diplomacy

MOFA to cap tsunami aid

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has so far received a total of NT$230.61 million (US$7.21 million) in cash for aid to people affected by December's tsunami tragedy in South and Southeast Asia, a ministry official said yesterday. Chiang Kuo-chiang (江國強), who is vice chairman of the ministry's NGO Affairs Committee, said the ministry's special account for receiving the tsunami-related donations will close at the end of this month. He said the ministry will form a special task force to decide how to use the donations. He said the ministry has already collected and delivered a large amount of relief goods. Both commercial and military planes have been used to transport the relief supplies to Indonesia, Sri Lanka and India, he said.

■ Society

Divorce petition rejected

Judges rejected a divorce request by a Taiwanese-American engineer who questioned whether his Taiwanese wife was really a man. The engineer, identified only by his surname, Hsiao, complained that his wife, surnamed Chou, does not like intercourse and refused to undergo a detailed health check. He told the court that her breasts were too small to be a woman's and she also had a man's first name. As a result, he wanted to divorce her because he wondered if he had married a man. His petition was rejected after Chou's family testified that she is indeed a woman.

■ Society

British urged to register

The British Trade and Cultural Office yesterday urged British citizens to register to vote at an early date so as not to forgo their ballots. The office said in a press release yesterday that in order to participate in the parliamentary general elections, which are believed to be held in early May, overseas voters need to register by March 11. Those who are registered to vote at home can cast ballots while abroad by post or by proxy, the statement said. An electoral registration form can be found on The Electoral Commission's voter information site (

■ Society

Woman recovers money

A woman in Taoyuan accidentally threw away NT$200,000, which she had planned to give away as lucky money in red envelopes, but luckily for her, the money was found in the garbage. The woman, identified by her surname, Hsu, withdrew NT$200,000 from her bank before the Lunar New Year. She wrapped the money in newspapers and placed it in the corner of her house. On New Year's Eve, she could not find the money and thought that she or her family members could have thrown it away during the pre-holiday cleanup. With help from garbage-truck drivers, Hsu was able to recover her money, although it smelled like trash.

■ Cross-strait Ties

Tourism Bureau gets new job

The Tourism Bureau took over responsibility yesterday for the reception of tour groups from China to prevent them from absconding en masse once they arrive here. Several Chinese tour groups disappeared after arrival at CKS International Airport last July. To prevent a recurrence, the Aviation Police Bureau sent its employees to meet such tour groups, help them clear customs and claim their luggage and then hand them over to their tour guides. As the Aviation Police Bureau faces a manpower shortage, the government decided to authorize the Tourism Bureau's travel service center at CKS Airport to take over the job, effective yesterday.

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