A draft amendment to broaden the definition of treason to include collusion with China has been submitted for legislative negotiations, with the first round of cross-caucus talks expected to begin tomorrow at the soonest.
Under the Criminal Code, treason through collusion must involve an “enemy state” and is therefore inapplicable to Taiwanese who spy for China.
The draft amendment, proposed by Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Wang Ting-yu (王定宇), seeks to expand the definition of treason to include collusion with an “enemy” — described in the proposal as any “country, political entity or organization that engages in armed conflict or a military standoff with the Republic of China,” or “posing a military threat to the nation.”
Photo: Lin Liang-sheng, Taipei Times
If passed, individuals caught colluding with China with the intent to subject Taiwan’s territory to its rule could be sentenced to death or life imprisonment.
The Criminal Code’s provisions on treason through collusion have been useless in practice, resulting in a serious flaw in the nation’s security, Wang said.
Considering that the draft involves the safety of 23 million Taiwanese, hopefully legislators across party lines would agree to pass it quickly without touching on the issue of the nation’s status, he said.
Only when the problem with the Criminal Code is solved can the government begin to deal with other issues in national security laws, he said.
Wang had previously cited as an example the case of retired vice admiral Ko Cheng-sheng (柯政盛), whose final assignment was deputy commander of the navy fleet.
Ko was sentenced by the Supreme Court in March 2015 to 14 months in prison for helping China set up a spy ring involving officers under his command and passing on classified military information to China, because the Criminal Code does not address Chinese espionage cases.
The amendment would close this loophole, Wang said.
Since the amendment was proposed in 2017, opposition parties have blocked it many times, he said.
“Now it has finally reached the final step,” he said.
Even if cross-caucus negotiations broke down, the amendment would still be put to a vote on the legislative floor, he said.
MORE ARRIVALS ALLOWED: Taiwan yesterday increased its cap on arrivals to 60,000 from 50,000 ahead of a full border opening with a weekly cap of 150,000 on Oct. 13 Travelers arriving in Taiwan from Oct. 13 would no longer be required to quarantine on arrival and visitors of all nationalities would be allowed to enter, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) announced yesterday. However, the number of arrivals would be capped at 150,000 per week, he added. Travelers aged two or older would be given four rapid antigen COVID-19 test kits on arrival and be asked to monitor their health for seven days, Cabinet spokesman Lo Ping-cheng (羅秉成) told a news conference. Under the new arrival protocol, travelers would have to take a test on the day of arrival or the day after, followed
SOVEREIGN NATION: The Chinese premier’s remarks about the CCP’s resolve to achieve unification sought to undermine the legitimacy of Taiwan, the MAC said Taiwan will never accept Beijing’s attempts to undermine its sovereignty, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said yesterday, after the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) at its National Day celebrations in Beijing vowed to achieve unification with Taiwan. The CCP’s statement was not conducive to peaceful cross-strait relations, the council said. The event, hosted by the Chinese State Council, featured Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平), Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (李克強), the other five CCP Politburo Standing Committee members and Vice President Wang Qishan (王岐山), as well as 500 guests from China and abroad. Taiwanese based in China also attended the ceremony, Xinhua news agency
Washington is evaluating a transfer of weapons systems requested by Taiwan, according to a copy of a report by the Ministry of National Defense (MND) that is to be submitted to lawmakers tomorrow. Asked whether the AGM-158 Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile would be among the weapons systems, the ministry refused to comment, but said that it would not rule out announcing the specifics later this year. The ministry’s domestically sourced high-priority military investments include submarines, next-generation light frigates, rescue ships, advanced trainer jets and infantry fighting vehicles, the report said. Planned deals include F-16A and F-16B jet performance upgrades, navigation and targeting
The Kaohsiung District Court has ordered a man to pay a convenience store NT$600 (US$18.83) in compensation for using his own mug to refill a pot of tea eggs, ruling against the store manager’s NT$1 million claim. In May, during the peak of a domestic COVID-19 surge, a man surnamed Lee (李) added water from his mug to a pot of tea eggs after seeing it was nearly dry. A clerk stopped Lee, then discarded all 60 eggs in the pot, worth an estimated NT$600, after consulting with the manager, it said. The manager sued Lee, demanding NT$1 million for damage to the