Yunlin prosecutor impeached
The Control Yuan yesterday impeached Yunlin district prosecutor Liao Chun-chien (廖椿堅) on a charge of abusing his powers when he worked in the Tainan Branch of the Taiwan High Prosecutor’s Office. The Control Yuan said in a statement that Liao, who has been suspended, had let five containers of smuggled firearms pass through customs during an investigation into a contraband firearms case in 2000. The whereabouts of four of the five containers are still unknown. The Control Yuan also charged Liao with helping an informer who had been prohibited from leaving the country to flee with a forged passport, it said. Liao was sentenced to eight years in prison and stripped of his political rights for three years after being found guilty in his second trial. The Control Yuan said eight prosecutors, two judges, a Ministry of Justice Investigation Bureau officer and two police officers have been impeached since August.
Ministry tackles WHA bid
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has completed a multilingual position paper to seek global support for Taiwan’s bid to gain observer status in the World Health Assembly (WHA), the WHO’s decision-making body. The ministry said it was presenting its position paper in Chinese, English, Spanish and French to explain to the international community the importance of Taiwan joining the WHA. In the paper, the ministry says that Taiwan was pleased to be included in the International Health Regulations (IHR) in January, but that this was not enough because the IHR mechanism is limited to the monitoring and control of infectious diseases. Only by taking part in WHO-led exchanges and activities could Taiwan fully engage with other member states to provide or obtain the latest technology and information relating to health issues, the ministry said.
Lawmakers want athletes
Lawmakers have urged the government to amend the law to lure foreign athletes by granting them Taiwanese citizenship while allowing them to keep their own nationality, media reports said yesterday. The Central News Agency (CNA) said 17 lawmakers submitted the proposal to attract foreign athletes who could win medals for Taiwan. The legislature will debate the proposal on Thursday, CNA said. Foreigners presently must renounce their nationality upon obtaining Taiwanese citizenship. The 17 lawmakers are asking the government to amend the nationality act and allow foreign athletes to choose if they want to renounce their nationality. Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chao Li-yun (趙麗雲) warned against recruiting foreign athletes carelessly, saying athletes had relatively short sporting careers and in certain sports had to wait for several years before representing an adopted country in international competition. “The sporting life for a gymnast ends at age 18, but for a ballgame athlete, it could be 30. So when we amend the law, we must be careful to get a return on our investment,” CNA quoted her as saying.
Coffee exhibition planned
The National Museum of History in Taipei has scheduled an exhibition for next month on the nation’s coffee culture. The exhibition, titled “Early Taiwanese Coffee Culture,” will run from May 27 to June 14 and will be open from 10am to 6pm every day except Mondays, the museum said in a press release yesterday.