Mainland Affairs Council Deputy Minister Chang Hsien-yao (張顯耀) will serve concurrently as deputy head of the semi-official Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF), the council said yesterday.
Chang will fill the position left vacant by Straits Exchange Foundation vice chairman and secretary-general Kao Koong-lian (高孔廉), who served his last day on Wednesday, the council said.
The council and Beijing’s Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) established a communication platform last year, paving the way for a meeting later this month between their respective chiefs, Wang Yu-chi (王郁琦) and Zhang Zhijun (張志軍).
Chang has a major role in coordinating the details of the planned meeting, the Chinese-language United Evening News reported yesterday, citing an unnamed source familiar with the matter.
After Chang assumes the post of SEF vice chairman and secretary-general, he is expected to integrate the two main cross-strait communication channels — between the SEF and its Chinese counterpart, the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits, and between the council and TAO, according to the report.
Since Kao tendered his resignation last month, speculation about his successor has been rife, with Chang tipped as the top candidate.
Since Chang will be holding two positions, Straits Exchange Foundation Deputy Secretary-General Maa Shaw-chang (馬紹章) will be promoted to deputy chairman to help share the workload, the council said.
Chang, who has been working at the council since 2012, formerly served in the National Security Council.
He joined the People First Party in 2000 and worked closely with its chairman, James Soong (宋楚瑜), serving as director of the party’s policy center.
In 2005, Chang arranged a meeting between Soong and former Chinese president Hu Jintao (胡錦濤), then-general secretary of Chinese Communist Party, after communicating with then-TAO chief Chen Yunlin (陳雲林).
Chang’s first task upon assuming the SEF post will be to prepare for the 10th round of cross-strait talks, the United Evening News reported.
FAMILY FEUD: Weng Jen-hsien, who was convicted of killing six people in 2016, was the second prisoner to be executed since President Tsai Ing-wen took office A death row inmate was executed on Wednesday, less than a year after he was convicted of killing six people by setting fire to his home. Minister of Justice Tsai Ching-hsiang (蔡清祥) said that he signed the order and the death sentence was carried out on Wednesday afternoon in New Taipei City. The Supreme Court on July 10 last year sentenced 53-year-old Weng Jen-hsien (翁仁賢) to death after he was convicted of killing his parents, niece, nephew and nephew’s wife and his parents’ caregivers. Weng set fire to his home in Taoyuan’s Longtan District (龍潭) on Feb. 7, 2016, after a family feud
At a campground in Nantou County, a team of women are using ropes to shimmy up a towering seven-story tall Chinaberry tree, fighting their fear of heights and reconnecting with nature. Tree climbing remains somewhat niche in Taiwan, but a growing number of women are embracing the challenge thanks to the island’s first international certified female climber arborist. Sylvia Hsu (許芢涵), 26, said she was inspired to set up her own women-only tree climbing classes after seeing the popularity of similar gatherings in Europe. “A women-only camp is a more relaxed environment,” she said. “I was hooked on trees after my first climb...
Police in Kaohsiung are investigating a possible murder after a woman’s body was found in a plastic container on Thursday. The bucket was found by a person operating an excavator on a construction site at a private lot next to the Ciaotou Sugar Refinery Station (橋頭糖廠站) on the Kaohsiung Mass Rapid Transit system. Police investigator Chen Jen-cheng (陳仁正) yesterday said police had reviewed missing person reports and have narrowed the identity of the victim down to about 20 possible people. Physical evidence suggested she might have been a Fongshan District (鳳山) woman surnamed Lin (林), who was about 60 years old when she
IN PRINCIPLE: The Central Epidemic Command Center began yesterday to ban visits to hospitalized patients, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday announced 10 new COVID-19 cases — eight imported and two locally transmitted — bringing the nation’s tally of confirmed cases to 339. The imported cases involved six men and two women, all Taiwanese, who had traveled to Austria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Indonesia, countries in Latin America, the UK or the US before arriving back in Taiwan between March 6 and Tuesday, center data showed. Among them, patient No. 338 was part of a tour group that traveled to Austria and the Czech Republic, and has resulted in an infection cluster of five cases,