Shuttle buses to run today
The Kaohsiung City Government said yesterday that it will offer shuttle buses to and from Pingtung County's Dapeng Bay (大鵬灣) for National Day fireworks. After an administrative meeting yesterday morning, Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu (陳菊) said that buses would leave every 30 minutes from Kaohsiung Train Station between 1pm and 3:30pm. The buses will return from Dapeng Bay every 30 minutes between 8:30pm and 10:30pm, Chen said. The measure, Chen said, was intended to encourage residents to take public transportation to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Kaohsiung Bus Service Administration Director Tseng An-li (曾安麗) said the bus ride would cost NT$30 to cover insurance.
Shih to give speech today
Shih Ming-teh (施明德), leader of a campaign to pressure President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) into resigning, will walk to the National Day celebrations in front of the Presidential Office this morning and make a speech, the campaign said yesterday. Campaign spokesman Jerry Fan (范可欽) said Shih -- a former chairman of the Democratic Progressive Party -- would be the group's sole representative at the ceremony. Shih will leave for the celebrations from the campaign's office on Chinan Road at 9:40am, and walk to the event wearing a red shirt, Fan said.
Chen thanks Swaziland
President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) expressed gratitude to Swaziland, one of the government's African allies, for speaking up for Taiwan's application to join the UN at the world body's general assembly. Chen made the remarks while meeting on Monday with Swazi House of Assembly Speaker Prince Guduza Dlamini, who is visiting with a delegation to attend Double Ten National Day celebrations. Chen also thanked Guduza for his country's efforts to incorporate Taiwan into international projects. Chen said a medical cooperation protocol signed with Swaziland when King Mswati III visited Taiwan for the Taiwan-Africa leadership summit last month would see Taiwan send a medical team at the beginning of next year to provide medical aid in Swaziland on a long-term basis. A protocol on cooperation between the countries over the next 10 years will soon go into effect and ensure continued good relations, Chen said.
Officials tackle dengue
The Kaohsiung County Government has sent health officials and quarantine experts to Tainan City to help halt an expanding outbreak of dengue fever ahead of the Oct. 20 opening of the 2007 National Athletic Games, a county official said yesterday. Kaohsiung County Bureau of Health Director Huang Chih-chung (黃志中), made the announcement in a report to the county government. Huang said that the number of indigenous dengue fever cases in Tainan City had reached 477 since the beginning of the year, while Kaohsiung City has recorded 64 cases and Tainan County 32. Given that the dengue fever virus will remain infectious through the end of this month, Huang suggested that athletes participating in the games in Tainan City take precautions against contracting the illness. The National Athletic Games will determine which athletes compete in the Olympic Games in Beijing next year.
Travelers caught with crabs
Customs officers have seized Chinese hairy crabs weighing a total of 274kg from inbound travelers since Sept. 8, the Taipei Customs Office said yesterday. It said in a press release that the sought-after crabs could pose a health threat. If travelers attempt to sneak them into the country, they will invariably be detected by customs officers or X-ray machines, it said, adding that officials were finding and destroying large numbers of hairy crabs every day. Taiwan adopted stricter inspection criteria to deal with Chinese hairy crabs this year after imported crabs last year were found to contain traces of the banned antibiotic nitrofuran, a cancer-causing agent. China recently accused Taiwan of adopting excessively stringent criteria, and said that unless the two nations could reach an agreement on inspection, Taiwanese would not be able to enjoy Chinese crabs this year. Local crab importers have
yet to apply for an import license this year, the Department of Health said.
Taipei to host design meet
Taipei has won its bid to host the 2011 World Design Congress, defeating the other finalist, Melbourne, Ministry of Economic Affairs officials said yesterday. Minister of Economic Affairs Steve Chen (陳瑞隆) was scheduled to call a news conference last night to officially announce the news, the officials said. Taipei filed its application with the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design (ICSID) in January and competed with 19 other cities from 13 countries for the right to host the event. After several rounds of voting, Taipei and Melbourne were shortlisted as finalists.
Chinese over-the-top (OTT) service provider iQiyi cannot register as a provider in Taiwan after the Mainland Affairs Council declared it to be an illegal service, the National Communications Commission (NCC) said yesterday. Both iQiyi and WeTV were deemed to be illegal Chinese OTT operators in an interdepartmental meeting on Friday last week, officials said, adding that this prohibits them from marketing their services in Taiwan or seeking subscribers. The government plans to block a local server that iQiyi has been using to transmit content to domestic audiences, which would disrupt its content transmission. OTT Entertainment Ltd, which is enlisted by iQiyi to
The Taipei Grand Mosque yesterday said its earlier decision to cancel Eid al-Fitr celebrations on Sunday to mark the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan would stand, even though there have been no new domestic cases of COVID-19 in more than a month. It will be the first time in 60 years that the event has not be held at the mosque. The Ministry of Labor had asked all mosques to suspend Eid al-Fitr celebrations and prayers this year, due to COVID-19 concerns, and encouraged Muslims to pray at home. This year Ramadan began on April 23 and is to
KAOHSIUNG VOTE: A city official allegedly wrote a message calling on supporters of Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu not to participate in the vote next month Prosecutors on Wednesday initiated an investigation of Kaohsiung Civil Affairs Bureau Director-General Tsao Huan-jung (曹桓榮) for allegedly telling supporters of Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) to interfere with a recall vote against Han, while pan-green politicians denounced the mayor and his team for devising ways to obstruct voting. After receiving complaints from residents, the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors’ Office launched its probe of Tsao for alleged breaches of the Civil Servants Election and Recall Act (公職人員選舉罷免法). Complainants provided evidence that Tsao on Saturday last week wrote on messaging app Line that Han supporters should not vote in the June 6 recall vote, saying:
BILINGUAL ASSISTANCE: The center launched a chat bot that features Chinese and English interfaces to provide foreigners with instant information about the pandemic The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday said that it would discuss with other nations the possibility of allowing businesspeople to visit on a case-by-case basis. Asked about loosening border restrictions, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said at the daily CECC news briefing that while the center is cautious about opening the nation’s borders, it would aim to diminish obstacles for important trade interactions without risking transmission of the novel coronavirus. Several foreign representatives in Taiwan have expressed an interest in the matter and the center would conduct related negotiations with the help of the