President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday denied meeting privately with bookie Chen Ying-chu (陳盈助) in Chiayi in September, slamming Next Magazine for carrying the story and accusing the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) of spreading the allegations without evidence.
In an interview with ETTV, Ma defended his integrity and said he did not meet with Chen on Sept. 10 during a campaign visit to Chiayi.
“The magazine made a false accusation and the DPP jumped on the bandwagon to spread the rumors. This is a vicious culture,” he said.
Allegations of a meeting between Ma and Chen were made on Wednesday when an article in Next Magazine said that the president had held a private meeting with Chen in which he asked for a donation of NT$300 million (US$9.9 million).
The Presidential Office, Ma’s re-election campaign office and the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) have all denied the allegations. On Thursday, the KMT threatened to take legal action against the magazine.
Amid the allegations and a neck-and-neck race with DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), Ma yesterday said he remained confident about his re-election bid even with People First Party Chairman James Soong’s (宋楚瑜) participation in the presidential election.
“I still believe that I will be re-elected even if Chairman Soong refuses to withdraw from the race … The differences between Chairperson Tsai and myself are pretty obvious, and I believe the people will choose me in the election,” he said.
The possibility of signing a peace agreement with China, Ma added, is a point of consideration because the issue will inevitably arise in the next decade, and as president, he should not avoid addressing the topic and must present a long-term plan to maintain peace and prosperity.
“I care about Taiwan’s peace and the lives of the people, their economic situation. I do not just care about my turnout in the election,” he added.
Taiwanese actress Big S, also known as Barbie Hsu (徐熙媛), and Chinese restaurateur Wang Xiaofei (汪小菲) officially announced their divorce yesterday, stating the decision was cordial and that they would be raising their two children together. The statement came by proxy through the couple’s legal counsel, filed by both Wang and Hsu. Hsu and Wang thanked fans for their love and support, with the couple saying that fate had blessed them with a time of happiness, and that they were grateful for their time together. They said that while they walked hand-in-hand as husband and wife, they would continue a cordial relationship as
DESTABILIZING: Beijing’s efforts to choke Taiwan, pressure its friends and hamper its democracy are a threat to the world, AIT Director Sandra Oudkirk said China’s provocative military activities near Taiwan are destabilizing and risk “miscalculation,” American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Director Sandra Oudkirk said yesterday, reiterating the US’ objection to any unilateral changes to the “status quo” in the Taiwan Strait. Oudkirk made the remarks in a speech at the annual conference of the Association of International Relations in Taipei. “In the Indo-Pacific region, America’s effort to resolve and manage differences with the leadership of the People’s Republic of [PRC] faces distinct challenges,” she said, referencing a range of actions by China that she said run counter to the shared values and interests of the
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