FDA seizes baby bottles
Baby bottles imported from Japan were seized by customs officials after tests indicated that they were made using a banned chemical, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said yesterday. The bottles were among a number of problematic imports seized after border inspections, the FDA said, adding that none of the bottles were sold locally. Samples from the baby bottles were found to contain traces of bisphenol A (BPA), which is used to harden plastics, the FDA said. The Sanitation Standard for Food Utensils, Containers and Packages stipulates that BPA cannot be used in the manufacture of baby bottles and so the 120kg shipment had to be destroyed or returned, it said.
Divorce data released
Of the 21,000 divorces registered in the first five months of the year, 4,326, or 20 percent, involved a divorce between a Taiwanese and a foreign national, government statistics published on Monday showed. Of these, by nationality, divorces between Taiwanese and Chinese spouses accounted for 54.1 percent of the total, followed by Southeast Asia at 38 percent, according to the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics. The share of transnational divorces in the first five months was consistent with the 20 percent share of total divorces last year and 20.8 percent of total divorces in 2015, but down from a 26 percent share in 2010. The data also showed that about 61,000 couples registered marriages in the first five months of the year, down 2,644, or 4.1 percent, from the previous year.
Belgian priest gets ID
Ninety-two-year-old Father Pierre Mertens received his national identification card yesterday, becoming the first foreign national in New Taipei City to be naturalized in recognition of his special contributions to Taiwan. The New Taipei City Government said the Belgian priest has devoted himself to humanitarian work in Taiwan for 65 years. Mertens serves in Caritas Taiwan, which was founded in 1968 and is a chapter of Caritas Internationalis, an organization that reflects the social mission and core values of the Catholic Church. Caritas Taiwan once received resources through Caritas Internationalis chapters around the world, but as it has grown more affluent now sends resources to needy countries. The priest was honored in 1997 for good deeds and was also given a medal by Pope John Paul II in 2003.
Travel to Vietnam rises
Visits by people with Republic of China passports to Vietnam in the first half of the year were up 23 percent from the same period last year, Vietnamese tourism figures showed. A total of 297,852 Taiwanese visited Vietnam from January to last month, ranking sixth among all overseas visitors. Last month alone, 50,176 Taiwanese traveled to Vietnam. The increase in Taiwanese arrivals was part of an overall trend, as Vietnam welcomed about 6.2 million overseas visitors in the first six months of the year, up 30 percent year-on-year, according to statistics from Vietnam’s head tourism office. China accounted for the most overseas visitors, with almost 1.89 million visitor arrivals, followed by South Korea (1.07 million) and Japan (380,000). Vietnam’s tourist industry has estimated that 13 million overseas visitors could enter Vietnam this year.
Taiwan might be China’s next target after it has “walled off” Hong Kong from the rest of the world with its new national security legislation, Academia Sinica Institute of Sociology fellow Wu Jieh-min (吳介民) said on Thursday. At a seminar organized by the Economic Democracy Union, the Taiwan Association for Human Rights, the Hong Kong Outlanders and the Judicial Reform Foundation, Wu said that the legislation is simultaneously a fig leaf concealing Beijing’s autocratic rule in Hong Kong and a figurative “Berlin Wall,” denying democratic countries access to Hong Kong. Wu said it is evident that Taiwan would be China’s next target. The
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
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb
The National Taiwan Museum’s Railway Department Park in Taipei is to open to the public today. The park in Datong District (大同) near the North Gate (北門, Beimen) is one of the museum’s four branches. During the Japanese colonial era, the site housed the railway department of the Office of the Governor-General of Taiwan’s Bureau of Transportation. After World War II, it served as the headquarters for the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) for several decades. In 2007, it was listed as a national monument under the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法). At an opening ceremony yesterday, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung