Thu, Apr 28, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

Staff Writer, with Agencies

DEFENSE

Missile could reach Beijing

Taiwan has developed a missile capable of reaching Beijing and tested it successfully three years ago, the Chinese-language United Daily News reported yesterday, citing a former defense minister. Taiwan’s military successfully fired the medium-range missile in early 2008 in a secret test attended by then--president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁), former defense minister Michael Tsai (蔡明憲) said in memoirs released this week. Tsai did not specify the range of the missile, but the United Daily News said it was capable of reaching major Chinese cities, including Beijing, Chengdu and Shenyang 2,000km away. The newspaper said Tsai is the first official to confirm Taiwan has developed the technology, though local media have previously reported that Taiwan possessed mid-range missile capabilities. Stephen Young, Washington’s then de facto envoy to Taipei, had expressed concern over the test, but Tsai assured him that Taiwan would not initiate any attack, the former minister said in the book. The Chinese military was prepared to go to war if Beijing-friendly candidate Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) lost the 2008 president election, Tsai wrote, citing Taiwanese and US intelligence.

POLITICS

Envoys to attend memorial

China is sending two representatives to attend the memorial service of former vice president Lien Chan’s (連戰) mother today. Li Bingcai (李炳才), vice president of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait, and Wang Yuwen (王育文), deputy director of the political party department of the Taiwan Affairs Office, will attend the ceremony in Taipei, Lien’s spokesman, Ting Yuan-chao (丁遠超), said yesterday. President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), as well as ambassadors and representatives stationed in Taipei from other countries — including the US, Singapore and El Salvador — will also pay their respects, Ting said. Lien’s mother, Chao Lan-kun (趙蘭坤), died in Taipei on April 17 at the age of 103.

SOCIETY

Women died of starvation

Two elderly sisters found dead in their home probably starved to death, police said yesterday, in a case that has highlighted rising concern over care of the nation’s aging population. The women, aged 77 and 79, were severely emaciated when their partially decomposed bodies were found on Tuesday in an apartment in Taipei, police said. Their 74-year-old brother, who appeared to be suffering from dementia, stayed with the corpses for several days before telling a neighbor. The neighbor contacted the police, who had to force their way into the apartment to remove the bodies. Police said they suspected that the sisters, who were apparently also suffering from dementia, had died of malnutrition because of a lack of care. Apart from their brother, they had no other living relatives.

TRAVEL

Ivory Coast under ‘red alert’

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday placed the Ivory Coast under “red travel alert” and strongly advised people to postpone trips or to avoid crowds if they visit the country. People planning to visit were also advised to register with the ministry’s Bureau of Consular Affairs so the government could locate them in the shortest time should they encounter any problems, the ministry said. The capture of the former Ivory Coast president ended a standoff on April 11, but the situation is still in turmoil, with shootings and robberies reported in Abobo, Treichville, Adjame and Yopougon districts in the capital, Abidjan, the ministry said.

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