An exiled student leader of the 1989 pro-democracy protests in Tiananmen Square in Beijing said yesterday he wanted to meet with a wealthy Taiwanese entrepreneur to settle a dispute over whether the Tiananmen Incident in 1989 was a massacre.
Wang Dan (王丹), who now lives in Taiwan, said on his Facebook page that he hoped to challenge the views of Tsai Eng-meng (蔡衍明), chairman of Want Want Group — which owns many major media outlets, including the China Times, a Taipei-based Chinese-language daily.
Wang called for a boycott of the China Times last month after Tsai appeared to have denied in an interview with the Washington Post that the 1989 crackdown in Beijing constituted a massacre.
According to the US newspaper, Tsai said he was struck at the time by footage of a lone man standing in front of a People’s Liberation Army tank and said that the man was not killed showed that reports of a massacre were not true.
“I realized that not that many people could really have died,” Tsai was quoted as saying, which elicited criticism from Wang and hundreds of other netizens.
“I am furious about Tsai’s comments on the Tiananmen protest, which are misleading,” Wang said on Jan. 23, two days after the Post interview was published.
In response, Tsai said in an open letter posted on Wang’s Facebook page on Tuesday that his remarks had been distorted and taken out of context by the Washington Post, and asked Wang to check the recording of the interview with Post reporter Andrew Higgins.
“Do you think I would ever make such a thoughtless ‘simple’ remark during an interview with international media?” asked Tsai, who was also cited in the article as saying that the unification of China and Taiwan was inevitable and something he really hoped he could see.
In his letter Tsai offered to apologize if anything he said in the full body of the interview was disrespectful to “mainland compatriots who suffered during the Tiananmen Incident” or hurt his Taiwanese compatriots.
Acknowledging Tsai’s comment, Wang said he would reserve judgement until after finding out if the Washington Post report did indeed take Tsai’s comments out of context.
FOSSIL CLUES: The bushfires resulted from a positive Indian Ocean dipole event, when the region east of the ocean becomes drier, professor Shen Chuan-chou said The bushfires that swept through Australia last year were connected to a phenomenon known as the Indian Ocean dipole (IOD), which is expected to become more frequent due to climate change, a geologist studying coral fossils said yesterday. National Taiwan University Department of Geosciences professor Shen Chuan-chou (沈川洲) since 2001 has been working with Australian and US researchers to study climate systems in the Indian Ocean. Led by Australian National University Research School of Earth Sciences professor Nerilie Abram, the team published a paper on IOD in the journal Nature on March 9. The bushfires resulted from a positive IOD event, when the
Senior judges yesterday met to discuss the constitutionality of a law that makes adultery a criminal offense, before being ordered by Judicial Yuan President Hsu Tzong-li (許宗力) to set a date for a constitutional interpretation within the next month. The judges met to discuss Article 239 of the Criminal Code on offenses against marriage and family, after 18 judges had called for a constitutional interpretation of the issue. Taipei District Court Judge Lin Meng-huang (林孟皇) said that while he had previously tried adultery cases and never questioned the law, his feelings changed when trying a case last year involving baseball star Wang
Instead of hating the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), help change it, KMT Chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣) said, as he urged young people to join efforts to reform the party. As the nation marked Youth Day on Sunday, Chiang said in a Facebook post that he wanted to remind people that “the KMT used to be very young.” Now, when people think of the KMT, they equate it with older people, he wrote. “Even if [the KMT] is a 100-year-old party, it must maintain a young mentality, and understand what young people want and what they want the KMT to do,” Chiang wrote.
A survey has found that 37.3 percent of transgender people in the nation have experienced gender-related discrimination or bullying in the workplace, the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights said yesterday. The alliance’s survey showed that 55.41 percent of transgender people said that they had been afraid to use a public restroom, 18.53 percent had been harassed or attacked in public, while 15.83 percent had been afraid to ask a police officer or other professional for help. The survey, conducted from March 14 to Wednesday last week, was based on 518 valid responses from transgender people aged 14 to 78, the