Wed, Oct 10, 2007 - Page 4 News List

Taiwan Quick Take

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

■ EVENTS

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.

■ POLITICS

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.

■ DIPLOMACY

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.

■ HEALTH

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.

■ CRIME

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

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