The current unrest in Hong Kong should serve as a warning to Taiwan to beware of China’s “political and economic embrace,” the Formosan Association for Public Affairs (FAPA) said.
“We urge the people of Taiwan to resist the attempts of the current Kuomintang [KMT] government of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) to move further with his rapprochement with China,” FAPA president Mark Kao (高龍榮) said.
FAPA, a Taiwanese-American grassroots organization with 54 chapters across the US, has also expressed its strong support for demonstrators in Hong Kong amid their struggle for democracy.
Kao said that FAPA “extends a hand in solidarity” to the Hong Kong protesters calling for more freedom, human rights and democracy.
“It is clear that Beijing’s promises of a ‘one country, two systems’ model for Hong Kong were empty promises and that Beijing is not honoring the commitments made in the 1984 Joint Declaration or the Basic Law,” Kao said.
He said that Beijing’s June 10 white paper and its Aug. 31 announcement that the candidates for Hong Kong’s chief executive election in 2017 must be approved by the central government show a “total disregard” for the basic principles of freedom and democracy.
“Even worse, when the people of Hong Kong took to the streets to peacefully express their views on these issues, they were met with riot police using tear gas and pepper spray — and that’s unconscionable,” Kao said.
What is happening in Hong Kong, he said, shows that closer ties with China would be detrimental for Taiwan’s future as a free and democratic nation.
Kao said that he supported the words of US Congressional Committee on Foreign Affairs subcommittee on Asia chairman Steve Cabot that Taiwan must be “very wary” when it comes to trusting China.
“We are seeing it now in Hong Kong,” Kao said. “Taiwan has to be very careful that they don’t get attracted into a situation that might seem like it is a good thing up front, but once you get involved with China you may find that you can’t get yourself out of their clutches.”
FATAL FIRE: The health department is trying to contact the inspector who visited the site of the illegal nursing home to ask why they did not advise follow-up checks The Taipei City Government yesterday said that a health department inspector last year had visited the site of a long-term care facility in Neihu District (內湖) after receiving a report questioning its status. A fire broke out at the facility on Tuesday afternoon, killing three people. The Taipei Fire Department said that it received a report about a fire on the first floor of a four-story residential building on Kangning Road Sec. 1 at 2:38pm on Tuesday, firefighters arrived at 2:43pm and the fire was put out by 3:07pm. The firefighters found three men in beds and rushed them to hospital for
Taipei City Councilor Wang Hao (王浩) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Monday called for security improvements to the MRT, as fare evasion has increased more than 13-fold on the metropolitan railway system over the past five years. Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) has spoken out against fare evasion and other contraventions of MRT regulations, but since he took office in 2015 the number of contraventions has more than doubled, Wang said, adding that there were 537 cases in 2015 compared with 959 last year. A video was posted to YouTube in June showing people how to evade paying a fare,
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Yuchi Township (魚池) fishers have appealed to the Nantou County Government for help in dealing with an invasive fish species in Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), where it has devastated the local ecosystem. Fishers at Sun Moon Lake have been using electrofishing in an attempt to eliminate the giant snakehead fish — found in Africa and Southeast Asia — but they have struggled to keep up with the growing population of the species, which breeds during September and October, the county government said on Monday. The county has contacted researchers at National Tsing Hua University, saying it hoped they could come up