The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been communicating with Canberra about Australia’s needs for relief aid amid massive bushfires, and its preliminary plan is to donate about 100,000 surgical masks, ministry spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) said yesterday.
The bushfires continue to rage across southeast Australia, killing scores of animals and causing serious damage to property, Ou told a news briefing in Taipei, adding that people traveling to the country should beware of air pollution.
Asked what aid Taiwan would provide to Australia, she said that the government plans to donate 100,000 masks, but added that the exact number and type have not been confirmed, as it is still gathering information about the country’s needs.
As masks are considered medical products in Australia, the ministry would need to follow local regulations when making the donation, she said.
The Australian Office in Taipei has also provided a list of several organizations that could receive donations for the bushfires, she added.
In related news, the Department of Latin American and Caribbean Affairs said that the ministry would donate 20,200 tonnes of rice to Haiti, up from 8,600 tonnes donated last year, as the Caribbean ally faces a food crisis amid social unrest.
After filing an application with the Council of Agriculture, the ministry would next month arrange the shipment of rice to the island country, department Deputy Director-General Silvia Liu (劉聿綺) said.
Due to an ongoing conflict between its ruling and opposition parties, the Haitian parliament on Monday stopped operations and the country’s affairs are being temporarily run by administrative orders, she 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