The Mainland Affairs Council has proposed giving maritime law enforcement agents broader powers to seize Chinese ships suspected of illegal activities.
The amendments — which are awaiting Executive Yuan approval — were drafted to close loopholes in the enforcement rules for the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (臺灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例), the council said.
Although the coast guard has the authority to seize Chinese ships and cargo and arrest their crew, the council said that past incidents suggest that they lack the authority to deal with certain suspicious or illegal activities.
Those activities include, but are not limited to, Chinese vessels that refuse to be boarded for inspection, trespassed in restricted or forbidden maritime zones, engaged in illegal fishing, or obfuscated their flag markings and name, the council said.
The amendments would empower the authorities to confiscate Chinese ships that have repeatedly committed these offenses, including their cargo, the council said.
The amended rules would also treat all ships and boats that are owned, rented, managed, operated, captained or piloted by Chinese as “Chinese vessels” to address the issue of ships that enter restricted or forbidden zones under another flag, the council said.
Those changes were prompted by increasingly common incidents in which Chinese vessels have endangered national security or poached the nation’s maritime resources by exploiting loopholes, the council said.
The amendments are in particular to address the omission of procedures to deal with Chinese vessels that obfuscated identification markings or are flying false flags, the council said.
An incident in 2008, when a Chinese fishing boat deployed a removable ship plaque to pass as a Taiwanese boat, has illustrated the urgent need to close the loophole, the council said.
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,
FEELING MISUNDERSTOOD: Media speculation has fueled confusion about the KMT’s reasons for skipping a Chinese forum and delaying an AIT meeting, party sources said The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Sunday said that it is not seeking to improve relations with the US or China at the expense of the other, and that its relations with the countries would be topic-based. The party has faced questions over its foreign policy after it on Monday last week announced its withdrawal from the annual Straits Forum and delayed planned talks with the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT). The party has also taken a tough stance on the importation of US meat containing ractopamine, while also lambasting China for increasing its military activity in and around the Taiwan Strait. Following
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