Cold weather on the way
A cold surge of wintery weather will hit the nation on Friday night, with temperatures in the north likely to fall as low as 9?C, the Central Weather Bureau said yesterday. The bureau said the first strong continental cold air mass would arrive tomorrow and be at its strongest between Friday night and Saturday morning, with the mercury dropping to 9?C. The bureau predicted a low of 11?C for Taipei, though it cautioned that the forecast could be revised downward in the coming days. Temperatures yesterday rose slightly to between 20?C and 21?C in the north and between 23?C and 24?C in central and southern areas, while nighttime temperatures ranged between 17?C and 20?C, the bureau said.
Speech club seeks members
The recently formed Taiwan Student Speaking Association is seeking more students interested in practicing their English-language speaking skills. The association meets at every other Monday from 6pm to 7pm at the e-cafe on the third floor of the National Taipei College of Business’ administration building in Taipei (No. 321, Jinan Rd Sec. 1). Students give short speeches of about 20 minutes, preferably in English, but Mandarin is acceptable, and then take questions from the audience. The group’s next meeting is on Monday, before taking an extended break for the New Year and Lunar New Year holiday period until March. Potential speakers and listeners are encouraged to attend. Admission is free. For more information, contact David at firstname.lastname@example.org or 0955-091-717, or Ina at email@example.com
Plane swap with US planned
The US will give Taiwan a vintage B-26 Invader that will become part of a museum display, in return for an F-5E warplane and an F-5F, military sources said on Monday. The B-26 is scheduled to arrive at Kaohsiung Harbor on Jan. 9 and will be put on display at an air force museum in Greater Kaohsiung after being decorated with the decals once used by the “Black Bats” squadron, the sources said. The “Black Bats” operated from 1958 until 1974 on clandestine military intelligence-gathering missions.
Alishan stamps to be issued
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Alishan Forest Railway, Chunghwa Post Co will issue commemorative sheets of postage stamps and hold a Dec. 25 issuing ceremony at Pei-men Station in Chiayi City. Alishan is a popular mountain resort and tourist attraction among both local and foreign visitors. According to the Chunghwa Post, the stamps, in NT$5 and NT$25 denominations, will feature the narrow-gauge mountain railway and the trains that run on it. The sheets will also bear a gold emblem on the left top corner to mark the 100 years of the forest railway.
Some personnel can’t vote
About 13,000 military personnel will not be able to return to their residences to cast their ballots in the Jan. 14 elections because they will be unable to leave their posts, Ministry of National Defense spokesperson Colonel David Lo (羅紹和) said yesterday. The number represents 6 percent of the nation’s military forces, Lo said. The military has outlined a plan of personnel rotations for the elections, Lo added, saying that the rotation will take place at noon on Jan. 14 to allow as many essential personnel to cast their votes as possible.
DIPLOMATIC MOVES: Beijing is reportedly pressing the state after reports of forming links with Taiwan, while the ministry is also planning to reopen its office in Guam soon A representative office is set to open in Somaliland at the end of this month, at the earliest, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said yesterday amid reports that Beijing is sending a diplomatic delegation to the east African country. The ministry on July 1 announced that Taiwan and Somaliland would establish representative offices, following a report by the Somaliland Chronicle Web site. It said at the time that the two nations did not plan to establish formal ties. Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi has instructed close confidants to explore the possibility of “mutual recognition between Taiwan and Somaliland,” the Somaliland Chronicle reported
‘IMMORAL, INSINCERE’: Huang Kun-huei said that Ma was ‘distorting history’ in claiming that Lee Teng-hui laid the foundation for the so-called ‘1992 consensus’ Former Presidential Office secretary-general Huang Kun-huei (黃昆輝) on Saturday rejected former president Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) claim that former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) had been a proponent of Beijing’s “one China” principle. Lee, who served as president from 1988 to 2000, died in Taipei on Thursday last week. After visiting the Taipei Guest House on Saturday to pay his respects to Lee, Ma posted on Facebook that “28 years ago on this day” Lee hosted a session of the now-defunct National Unification Council, during which he passed a resolution on the “one China” principle. That resolution became the basis of the Chinese Nationalist Party’s
NEW ERA: Taiwan, which has controlled its virus outbreak, now faces the challenge of safely resuming economic exchanges with other nations, Chang Shan-chwen said People should not focus entirely on having zero new confirmed COVID-19 cases in Taiwan, but neglect overall control over the disease situation, Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) specialist advisory panel convener Chang Shan-chwen (張上淳) said yesterday. Chang made the remark at a forum in Taipei discussing the steps Taiwan should take in the post-pandemic era, organized by the Chinese-language magazine Global Views Monthly. Chang, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director-General Chou Jih-haw (周志浩), and Stanford University’s Center for Policy, Outcomes and Prevention director C. Jason Wang (王智弘) each made a presentation, followed by a panel discussion with Chang, Wang and Buddhist Tzu
A Belgian man who tested positive for COVID-19 in Taiwan last week is likely to have contracted the disease in Taipei in late June, National Taiwan University (NTU) College of Public Health vice dean Tony Chen (陳秀熙) said yesterday. The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Saturday reported that the man, who is in his 20s, came to Taiwan for work on May 3 and tested positive on Wednesday last week as he was about to depart. The man in March reported loss of taste and smell, the center said, adding that he worked in Changhua County, but visited Taipei several times,