The Taiwan-Israel waiver agreement took effect yesterday, allowing Republic of China (ROC) passport holders to enter Israel and stay up to 90 days every 180 days without visas, the Israel Economic and Culture Office in Taipei announced yesterday. Based on the principle of reciprocity, Taiwan granted the same privilege to citizens of Israel, the 114th country or region in the world that Taiwanese nationals could visit without visas or with landing visas, and the first in the Middle East. Ali Yang (楊心怡), deputy director-general of the ministry of foreign affairs’ Department of West Asian Affairs, said the ministry was negotiating visa-waiver agreements with two other countries in the Middle East region. Meanwhile, the ministry said it had been informed by Kosovo on Monday that it had granted ROC passport holders with supporting documents visa-free entry for stays of up to 90 days, effective immediately.
New rules for Red Cross
Following public criticism of the Red Cross Society’s transparency in the handling of donations, the Ministry of the Interior (MOI) has recently passed draft revisions to the Red Cross Society of the Republic of China Act (中華民國紅十字會法) to tighten regulations on the group’s fundraising. The ministry’s Department of Social Affairs director Huang Pi-hsia (黃碧霞) said yesterday that while the society was allowed to make fundraising decisions on its own, the revisions would require the group to apply for permission from the ministry, just like other non-governmental organizations, before launching a fundraising campaign. The revisions passed by the ministry would be sent to the Executive Yuan for further review before being forwarded to the Legislative Yuan for final approval, Huang added.