Envoys to discuss cross-strait extradition

MAKING DEALS: The SEF and ARATS chairmen will seek agreement on joint efforts to fight crime and apprehend fugitives as well as hackers and telecoms fraudsters

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

Wed, Apr 01, 2009 - Page 3

Affairs pertaining to the extradition of suspects who flee across the Taiwan Strait, as well as cross-strait Internet hacker attacks, are to be discussed during the next round of cross-strait talks, a Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) official said on Monday.

The two issues will be included on the agenda of the third round of talks between Taiwan’s Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) and China’s Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS) tentatively scheduled for next month, MAC Vice Chairman Liu Te-shun (劉德勳) said.

President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) had said on Monday that the country was in the process of signing extradition treaties with ­Washington and Beijing in light of the difficulties experienced in extraditing suspects in the absence of such agreements.

Liu said he expected SEF Chairman Chiang Pin-kung (江丙坤) and ARATS Chairman Chen Yunlin (陳雲林) to sign an agreement on joint efforts to combat crime, setting the stage for closer cooperation between the two sides on crime fighting and prevention.

He added that law enforcement authorities from Taiwan and China have repatriated fugitives or convicts from one side to the other under the Kinmen Agreement, signed by the Red Cross societies of Taiwan and China in 1990.

However, the Kinmen Agreement allows only for repatriation, not extradition, Liu said.

He said judicial officials from the two sides have expressed hope that the content and stipulations of the Kinmen Agreement could be upgraded and expanded to include extradition operations, judicial cooperation and exchanges of intelligence and evidence.

He added that issues concerning Internet hacking and telecommunications fraud would be discussed in the upcoming Chiang-Chen talks, citing a recent New York Times report that quoted Canadian researchers as saying that a massive global computer spy network known as GhostNet, based in China, had compromised more than 1,295 computers in 103 countries.