New envoy Jakarta-bound
The nation’s new representative to Indonesia, Chang Liang-jen (張良任), is scheduled to leave for Jakarta on Wednesday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. He is filling the vacancy created by the appointment of the former representative, Andrew Hsia (夏立言), to be deputy minister of national defense in October last year. Chang, 67, attended National Chengchi University’s Graduate Institute of East Asian Studies and holds a master’s degree in International Relations from Harvard University, the ministry said. He was sworn in as head of the Taipei Economic and Trade Office in Jakarta last month and will start the job before the Lunar New Year holidays because there are many matters in Indonesia that he has to deal with, the ministry said. Chang has previously served as representative to Hong Kong, deputy minister of the Mainland Affairs Council and deputy defense minister.
Nine held for trafficking
Police have cracked a human trafficking ring, rescuing 13 foreign women forced into prostitution, Hsinchu police said on Thursday. Nine suspects were arrested in Hsinchu City and Taoyuan and Yilan counties. The 13 victims were from Indonesia and Vietnam, police said. A Taiwanese man surnamed Lin (林) and his Vietnamese wife have been named as the suspected masterminds of the operation, which brought Vietnamese and Indonesian women to work in Taiwan by promising them jobs as domestic caregivers. Once in Taiwan, the women were allegedly forced to take drugs and routinely abused, police said. The ring allegedly operated out of a spa and massage parlor in Yilan, which was used as a front to hide the prostitution activities and keep the women captive, police said.