Lee Teng-hui to visit Japan
Former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) is to visit Ishigaki Island, Japan, between July 30 and Aug. 3, and he is expected to deliver a speech on Taiwan-Ishigaki ties, Lee’s office director Wang Yan-chun (王燕軍) said. The trip is being made at the invitation of a group of young Japanese mayors, of which Ishigaki City Mayor Yoshitaka Nakayama is a key member, Wang said. Lee is expected to talk about issues such as the historical connection between Ishigaki and Taiwan, and his vision for Taiwan-Japan exchanges in his speech, Wang said. It is to be Lee’s first visit to Ishigaki, he added. Asked if the 92-year-old Lee, who suffered from a mild stroke late last year, can cope with the flight, Wang said the flight takes only 50 minutes and that there should not be any problems.
SOUTH CHINA SEA
Research center planned
Taiwan is planning to set up an international center to conduct ocean and weather research in the South China Sea, as part of its efforts to boost cooperation with ASEAN, Minister of Science and Technology Yang Hung-duen (楊弘敦) said. Yang said his ministry would push for the establishment of a South China Sea International Research Center in line with the government’s new southbound” policy. The plan includes establishing an observation station on Taiwan-held Itu Aba Island (Taiping Island, 太平島), the largest naturally formed landmass in the Spratly Islands (Nansha Islands, 南沙群島), and sharing the ocean and weather research data with ASEAN nations, Yang said. The ministry is also to devise a four-year plan for Taiwan’s scientific and technology development, based on the ideals of a smart, healthy and low-carbon society, Yang said.
‘HONEYMOON’ IS OVER: A political science professor said that the Tsai administration’s popularity peaked after it successfully contained COVID-19, but is waning President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) and Premier Su Tseng-chang’s (蘇貞昌) approval ratings fell significantly this month in the wake of the government’s handling of the distribution of relief funds and stimulus coupons to people and businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, a poll released yesterday by the New Power Party (NPP) showed. The poll showed that 68 percent of respondents said they were satisfied with Tsai’s performance, down 8.9 percentage points from last month, while 21 percent said they disapproved of her performance. Her approval among respondents aged 20 to 29 fell 14.7 percentage points, the largest decrease when compared with other age
Peggy Chen (陳佩琪), wife of Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲), yesterday said that the Central Epidemic Command Center’s (CECC) claim that Taiwan had warned the WHO about possible human-to-human transmission of COVID-19 was “far-fetched.” The US on April 9 said that the WHO had put politics first and ignored Taiwan’s early warning in December last year, which the WHO denied the following day. The WHO said that it received an e-mail from Taiwanese authorities on Dec. 31 last year, but that “there was no mention in the message of human-to-human transmission.” Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the CECC,
Food delivery provider Foodpanda had 564 consumer disputes from January to last month and failed to attend many mediation sessions with local governments nationwide, the Executive Yuan’s Consumer Protection Committee said. In a news release earlier this month, the committee said that it investigated consumer complaints and mediations for Foodpanda and rival Uber Eats during the period, when the number of delivery orders jumped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Uber Eats had 80 consumer disputes, the committee said. Of Foodpanda’s consumer disputes, 368 resulted from delivery drivers canceling orders after customers could not be reached, 108 were related to the quality or quantity
PROTECTION LACKING: DPP Legislator Lai Pin-yu said that currently, victims cannot legally force online platforms to remove sexual videos or imagery of them A bill to prevent the nonconsensual distribution of imagery or videos of sexual acts between adults on Friday passed a first reading and has been forwarded to a Legislative Yuan committee to be discussed. The bill was jointly proposed by 18 Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators. It seeks to promote gender equality, uphold righteous and moral social conduct and to protect the privacy of individuals, all of which would help prevent incidents similar to South Korea’s “Nth Room” case, the proposal said. The Nth Room involves a criminal investigation into the distribution of sexually exploitative videos via the Telegram app from 2018 to