US posting delayed
Former Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) deputy chairman David Huang (黃偉峰) has been appointed deputy representative to the US, sources told the Taipei Times yesterday. The move was approved by former premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌), but Su's sudden resignation last week left the documents authorizing Huang's posting unsigned. However, a senior Ministry of Foreign Affairs official said that the appointment is not likely to change under the new Cabinet. The source said Premier Chang Chun-hsiung (張俊雄) would deal with the issue.
Ortega cool on Taiwan
A Nicaraguan daily reported on Tuesday there were signs that the administration of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega had increasingly alienated Taipei since he was sworn in in January. One such signal was Nicaraguan Foreign Minister Samuel Santos not attending a ministerial-level meeting tomorrow in Belize between Minister of Foreign Affairs James Huang (黃志芳) and his counterparts from Taiwan's Central American allies, the El Nuevo Diario reported. The newspaper said Santos had appointed his deputy, Valdrack Jaentschke, to attend the meeting. Santos would be the third foreign minister to miss tomorrow's meeting. His counterparts from Panama and Costa Rica will also not attend. The Republic of China embassy in Nicaragua did not comment on the report.
Lu, Su eyed for legislature
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairman Yu Shyi-kun yesterday said he is considering nominating Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) and former premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) to be legislators-at-large. Yu said he will put himself in the 18th or 19th place in the list. According to the party's regulations, the chairman is authorized to nominate four candidates for legislator-at-large. The first 12 candidates on the list are considered safe nominations. Yu said that all the nominees he suggests will still need to be approved by the DPP's nomination committee. Lu's office said later that she appreciated Yu's gesture of goodwill but she thought it would be a good idea to give the opportunity to be legislator to someone else because there are many talented people in the party. Su yesterday also declined to be put on the nomination list.
Measles alert for Japan
The Centers for Disease Control yesterday urged the public to make sure that children traveling to Japan have been vaccinated for measles. The center said that more than 95 percent of children in Taiwan receive the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine and there have been no cases of measles in this country this year. However, it urged caution as the volume of travel between Taiwan and Japan is high. A measles outbreak in the Kanto region of Japan has spread to surrounding areas.
Men win big at lottery
More men have won big lottery prizes in the first four months of this year than women, the Taiwan Lottery Co said yesterday. It said 72 percent of the 163 winners during that period were men, most of whom live in Taipei City and Taipei County. Some 29 percent of the men who won large prizes are aged between 40 and 49 and work in the service sector or as freelancers. Nearly 30 percent of them purchase lottery tickets every week, spending from NT$100 to NT$500.
Proposed legislation in the US outlines three conditions in which Washington would be authorized to protect Taiwan were China to invade, a report said yesterday. US Representative Ted Yoho this month said he would introduce a Taiwan Invasion Prevention Act, which would authorize US military force if China were to invade Taiwan-controlled areas, including its outlying islands. According to a version of the bill obtained by the Chinese-language Liberty Times (the sister paper of the Taipei Times), the bill lists three conditions in which a US president would be authorized to use military force to protect Taiwan: If China uses military force
Two new commuter trains are scheduled to be launched in January next year, the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) said yesterday. The acquisition of EMU-900 commuter train cars is part of the railway operator’s plan to replace 589 train cars that have been in operation for more than three decades. The agency has also placed orders to buy 600 intercity train cars. The first batch of 20 EMU-900 cars is to be delivered to the nation in September, although delivery might be delayed until October due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the agency said. The batch would be formed into two trains of 10
The Supreme Court on Tuesday found four men guilty of attempted murder in the 2017 stabbing of Spanish surfer Ignacio Prio on a Pingtung County beach in the final ruling in the case, sentencing them to three-and-a-half to six years in prison. The defendants had appealed their convictions for attempted murder in the first and second rulings, which had also led to prison sentences ranging from three-and-a-half years to six years. The then-42-year-old Prio went to Jialeshui Beach (佳樂水) near Kenting (墾丁) on March 31, 2017, was attacked after he asked four men to remove their fishing lines from an area
MEDICINAL HERB: The FRIL protein extracted from hyacinth beans helped laboratory mice survive H1N1 infection and effectively neutralized the coronavirus A protein isolated from hyacinth beans, a medicinal herb known for centuries, has been found to restrict the activities of SARS-CoV-2 and influenza viruses in laboratory experiments, a team of Academia Sinica researchers said yesterday. The beans’ curative effect is documented in the 16th-century Chinese medicine classic Compendium of Materia Medica (本草綱目) and they are also a food source in some countries, the Genomics Research Center’s Chemical Biology Division Director Alex Ma (馬徹) told a news conference in Taipei. Center senior research specialist Jan Jia-tsrong (詹家琮) experimented with up to 500 medicinal herbs to see if they could restrict influenza viruses and