Three Taiwanese arrested
Bangkok police say they have arrested three Taiwanese and a Thai after seizing 230kg of heroin before it could be smuggled to Hong Kong. Police Lieutenant General Chaiwat Chotima said investigators seized 678 bars of heroin worth 426 million baht (US$13 million) at a hotel in Bangkok’s outskirts on Thursday before the drugs were delivered to smugglers. Chaiwat said yesterday the Thai suspect was arrested at the hotel, while the three Taiwanese were caught before they boarded a flight to Hong Kong at Suvarnabhumi Airport. He said the four are facing a charge of possessing drugs for sale and will be investigated on drug trafficking charges. Police believe the value of the narcotics would increase five to 20 times when sold abroad.
Airports handle more traffic
The growing number of overseas tourists visiting Taiwan has resulted in a rise in the number of passengers handled by Taiwan’s main airports in the first half of the year, according to Ministry of Transportation and Communications statistics. A total of 14.75 million travelers used Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport in the first six months of this year, or an average of 82,000 per day, setting a half-year record for the airport. A total of 2.79 million travelers, or an average of 15,000 per day, used Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) in the January-to-June period, the highest number the airport recorded in a half year in nearly seven years. Of Taiwan’s three main international gateways, only Kaohsiung International Airport saw a decline in passenger traffic from a year earlier. The number of passengers it handled fell by 1.6 percent in the first half, primarily because of a decline in traffic on a domestic route to the outlying island of Kinmen.
Salgueiro concert tomorrow
Portuguese singer Teresa Salgueiro will bring the traditional urban folk music of her country to Taiwan, in a one-night-only performance this weekend, organizer Le Pont des Arts Agence Artistique said yesterday. The 44-year-old diva, who starred in Lisbon Story by Wim Wenders in 1994, will perform selections from the movie soundtrack, fado songs and other music at her concert tomorrow, Le Pont des Arts said. Salgueiro, who is visiting Taiwan for the first time, said at a press briefing in Taipei that she hoped her performance would help give Taiwanese a better understanding of the city of Lisbon. Fado, a musical genre that can be traced back to the early 1800s in Portugal, is characterized by mournful tunes and lyrics, often about the sea or the life of the poor, and is characteristically infused with sentiments of resignation, fatefulness and melancholia. Salgueiro’s concert will be staged at the National Concert Hall in Taipei.
Peak meteor shower viewing
Stargazers have a chance of getting a good look at the Perseid meteor shower next week, one of the most spectacular celestial events this year, the Taipei Astronomical Museum said yesterday. The meteor shower, which started in the middle of last month and continues until late this month, will peak between 2:15am and 4:45am on Tuesday, the museum said. Conditions for star-watching should be good after the new moon sets at about 10pm on Monday, the museum added. The Perseid shower has a rate of about 100 meteors per hour from a radiant near the North Star, where the Perseid meteoroids strike the Earth’s atmosphere and burn up, the museum said.
A Taipei veterinarian is urging pet owners to avoid using insecticides around their homes, as their ingredients can be toxic to pets. Commercial-grade insecticides contain pyrethroids — organic compounds similar to natural pyrethrins, pesticides produced by flowers such as chrysanthemums — in quantities that are harmless to humans, but potentially fatal to cats and dogs, Asian Veterinary Specialist Referral Center veterinarian Chua Man-ling (蔡曼琳) said. Even in small quantities, pyrethroids are hazardous to cats, as they lack the metabolic enzymes needed to process them, Chua said. Cockroach sprays and ant traps are especially dangerous to pets as they contain boric acid, she
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
DREAMING OF TRAVEL: About 7,000 people applied for the experience, with about 60 chosen for the first flight yesterday, which includes boarding an airplane Starved of the travel experience during COVID-19? Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) has the solution — a fake itinerary where you check in, go through passport control and security, and even board the aircraft. You just never leave. The airport yesterday began offering travelers the chance to do just that, with about 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere. About 7,000 people applied to take part, with the winners chosen by random. More fake flight experiences are to take place in the coming weeks. “I really want to leave the country, but because of the pandemic, lots of flights cannot fly,”