Sun, Apr 14, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan, US team up on abductions

LOCATING CHILDREN:The memorandum enables the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the US Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs to work together

By Lu Yi-hsuan and Jonathan Chin  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) yesterday in Arlington, Virginia, signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to cooperate in addressing parental child abductions.

The memorandum enables the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the US Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs to enhance information sharing and cooperation when responding to international parental child abductions, MOFA said in a statement.

Deputy Representative to the US Louis Huang (黃敏境) and AIT Managing Director John Norris signed the MOU, the AIT said.

The event was also attended by bureau Special Adviser on Children’s Issues Suzanne Lawrence and US Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Jim Heller, it added.

The memorandum has accompanied increasing social links between Taiwan and the US, such as marriages, MOFA said.

Under the agreement, the health ministry and bureau representatives are to convene in semiannual and need-based meetings to assist law enforcement agencies in locating children abducted across a border by a parent, MOFA said.

The relationship between Taiwan and the US is strong and the two sides are focusing on issues that affect the well-being of Taiwanese and Americans, such as children’s welfare, it said.

“Since the signing of the Taiwan Relations Act 40 years ago, AIT and TECRO [the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office] have worked to encourage deeper cooperation between our two societies, and today’s MOU is the latest reflection of these efforts,” the AIT said in a separate statement.

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