The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday welcomed the Halifax International Security Forum’s announcement that it would host its first major event in Asia from Jan. 21 to Jan. 23 next year in Taipei, after it earlier presented a leadership prize to President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文).
The Washington-based group of security officials from the world’s democratic states has said it would cohost HFX Taipei with the Institute for National Defense and Security Research.
In May, the group awarded Tsai the 2020 John McCain Prize for Leadership in Public Service in recognition of her handling of COVID-19 and guarding Taiwan’s democracy, which sparked ire from Beijing.
Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times
HFX Taipei would be Halifax’s first major meeting in Asia, and underscores that Taiwan is a democratic state and participant in the affairs of the region, the ministry said in a news release.
The ministry would work with Halifax and the institute to ensure the success of the event, which would help Taiwan and like-minded partners defend shared democratic values, it said.
The meeting would be attended by internationally recognized opinion leaders, the institute said in a statement.
Since its establishment by the Ministry of National Defense in 2018, the institute has promoted “think tank diplomacy” with counterparts in other states, including Australia, India, Japan, New Zealand, the UK and the US, as well as European countries, it said.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers hailed the news as a sign of improving ties with the world’s powerful democracies.
“The [Halifax] think tank is heavily funded by the Canadian government,” DPP Legislator Wang Ting-yu (王定宇) said. “The HFX Taipei forum is effectively a form of semi-official cooperation between the two state-level think tanks.”
Politico had reported that the Canadian government had warned the forum not to give the award to Tsai for fear of angering Beijing. Canada denied the report.
After many US senators and Canadian representatives voiced support for the forum’s decision, it presented the award to Tsai.
DPP Legislator Lo Chih-cheng (羅致政) said the institute would discuss security issues regarding China at the forum.
“This shows that the world’s democracies are coming together to resist totalitarian China,” he said.
That Canadian lawmakers have stood by the forum in honoring Tsai suggests that Canadians’ views on China have changed, he said.
Beijing’s “wolf warrior” diplomacy and saber-rattling is not likely to have an effect on that country, he added.
A TAIWAN FIRST: The duo are the first badminton players from Taiwan to climb an Olympic podium, and Tai Tzu-ying has a shot at doing the same today Taiwanese badminton duo Lee Yang (李洋) and Wang Chi-lin (王齊麟) yesterday won the nation’s first Olympic gold medal in the sport when they prevailed over a third-seeded Chinese pair in the final of the men’s doubles at the Tokyo Olympics. Lee and Wang, both first-time Olympians, defeated Liu Yuchen (劉雨辰) and Li Junhui (李俊慧) 21-18, 21-12 in a 34-minute final at the Musashino Forest Sports Plaza. As of yesterday, Taiwan had bagged seven medals in Tokyo — two golds, two silvers and three bronzes — topping its previous best of five medals in 2000 and 2004. Taiwan moved to No. 17 in the
NO ‘ONE CHINA’ LIE: The appropriations act passed the US House of Representatives with a vote of 217-212, but still needs Senate approval and the president’s signature The US House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a foreign assistance spending bill with an amendment forbidding that funds be used to create, procure or display maps depicting Taiwan as part of the People’s Republic of China. The amendment was introduced by five Republican representatives — Tom Tiffany, Steve Chabot, Scott Perry, Kat Cammack and Mike Gallagher — and passed unanimously in a bundle with a dozen other amendments. “This is a common sense measure,” Tiffany said, speaking on the House floor on Wednesday. “As we all know, Taiwan has never been part of communist China. The Taiwanese people elect their
‘TEAM TAIWAN’: Taiwanese athletes have performed admirably and raised the nation’s profile, but many abroad still think they are Chinese, an advocate said Advocacy groups have called for the national team to compete under the name “Taiwan” at the Tokyo Olympics, while former Olympian Chi Cheng (紀政) has launched another referendum petition on the issue. Taiwanese athletes have performed outstandingly at the Olympics and have raised the nation’s profile on the world stage, Northern Taiwan Society chairman Lee Chuan-hsin (李川信) said on Friday. “Many foreign news agencies, including Japan’s NHK, have called our delegation ‘Taiwan’ instead of ‘Chinese Taipei.’ Therefore our own people and politicians should also speak of ‘Team Taiwan’ and Taiwanese athletes,” he said. “However, in Taiwan, most of the time the Taiwanese team
SOAKED: Although rain in central and southern Taiwan is to ease today, chances of heavy or extremely heavy rain would be high in the morning, a CWB forecaster said Extreme torrential rain brought by a southwesterly jet stream yesterday wreaked havoc in central and southern Taiwan, causing flash floods and triggering mudflows and landslides in mountainous areas. By 5pm yesterday, the Central Weather Bureau’s observation station in Yuyoushan (御油山) in Kaohsiung’s Liouguei District (六龜) had registered accumulated rainfall of 726.5mm since 12am on Saturday, the highest among the bureau’s observation stations. It was followed by the observation station in Kaohsiung’s Maolin District (茂林), which recorded accumulated rainfall of 671.5mm over the period. Six of the 10 observation stations that recorded the highest accumulated rainfall yesterday were in Liouguei, bureau