The Czech Republic’s commitment to democracy and defense of Ukraine are deserving of admiration, Legislative Speaker You Si-kun (游錫堃) said yesterday while receiving a delegation led by Czech Senator Jiri Drahos in Taipei.
Drahos, who chairs the Czech Senate’s Committee on Education, Science, Culture, Human Rights and Petitions, and 12 other representatives arrived in Taiwan on Sunday for a six-day visit.
Addressing a reception for the delegation at the Grand Hotel yesterday afternoon, You opened by thanking the Czech s for welcoming him and other Taiwanese lawmakers when they visited the European nation in July.
Photo courtesy of the Legislative Yuan
He also praised the Czech Republic as a democratic leader in the region, whose peaceful 1989 Velvet Revolution instigated a wave of democratization across central and eastern Europe.
The late Czech president Vaclav Havel — the first to be elected democratically after the fall of communism in the nation — had the foresight to recognize that the totalitarian nature of communism is unsustainable, You said.
Yet over the past few years, democracy has been losing ground, he said, pointing to Chinese and Russian expansionism, and military rule in Afghanistan and Myanmar.
Photo courtesy of the Legislative Yuan
The Czech Republic ranks 10th in the world in terms of monetary aid to Ukraine — seventh as a percentage of GDP — and sixth in terms of military aid, You said, citing data from Germany’s Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
The nation’s defense of Ukraine in keeping with Havel’s spirit is worthy of admiration, he added.
In his address, Drahos said that although he only arrived the day before, it already feels like home.
The Czech Republic will continue to push for Taiwan’s involvement in international organizations such as the WHO and International Civil Aviation Organization, he said.
Drahos also expressed the hope of establishing direct flights between the two nations to make travel more convenient.
The delegation also includes Czech Academy of Sciences president Eva Zazimalova; Michal Lukes, general director of the National Museum in Prague; Roman Hvezda, director of the ELI Beamlines facility, an international laser research center; and officials from the fields of education, science and technology, as well as experts in epidemic prevention and information security.
Drahos had originally planned to visit Taiwan in October 2020, but postponed the trip due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Additional reporting by CNA
TAIWAN PROTECTION MEASURE: US Army General Charles Flynn would not say where in the Asia-Pacific the missiles would be sent, but only that they would arrive in 2024 The US is to send medium-range missiles including the Standard Missile 6 (SM-6) and Tomahawk to the Asia-Pacific next year to deter a Chinese attack on Taiwan, US military news Web site Defense One reported. The report cited comments US Army General Charles Flynn made during the annual Halifax International Security Forum on Nov. 19. “We have tested them and we have a battery or two of them today,” Flynn was quoted as saying. “In 24. We intend to deploy that system in your region. I’m not going to say where and when. But I will just say that we will
LOYALTY: The 10 active and retired soldiers betrayed the nation and its people by leaking and passing on military secrets to China, the High Prosecutors’ Office said Ten former and current military officers were yesterday indicted on charges of spying for China, including two who allegedly filmed themselves pledging loyalty to Beijing. The High Prosecutors’ Office requested life imprisonment for the suspects in light of the severity of the crime. The 10 active-duty and retired officers included members of the 601st Brigade of the Aviation Special Forces comprising attack helicopter squadrons and elite combat units in charge of defending northern Taiwan, including Taipei. The other suspects came from Huadong Defense Command, in charge of defending the eastern coast; Kinmen Defense Command, in charge of defending Kinmen and Matsu; and one
NO FREE LUNCH: Taiwanese joining the trips to China met TAO and United Front Work officials who urged them to vote for candidates who support closer ties with Beijing The Ciaotou Prosecutors’ Office in Kaohsiung yesterday released two suspects on bail who have been accused of recruiting Taiwanese to join tours to China funded by Beijing and in which they were urged to vote for pan-blue candidates in January’s presidential and legislative elections. The pan-blue camp generally refers to the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), the People First Party, the New Party and the Young China Party, which support closer relations with China. Prosecutors said that a man, surnamed Cheng (鄭), and a woman, surnamed Yeh (葉), who are members of the China Pan-Blue Association, recruited Taiwanese tourists to join tours arranged
The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus yesterday slammed a proposal by New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi (侯友宜), the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) presidential candidate, to permit a “significant number” of Chinese students to study and work in Taiwan, saying it would be detrimental to young Taiwanese. At an event on Monday hosted by nine major industrial and business groups, Hou said that if elected, he would reinitiate cross-strait dialogue on the premise that Taiwan’s dignity would not be compromised and that the talks would be held in good faith. The talks would include lifting a ban on Chinese tour groups and