Minister of Foreign Affairs Mark Chen (陳唐山) yesterday blasted Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo (楊榮文) for telling the UN that actions by Taiwan's independence groups could lead to war with China. \n"Singapore holds China's lan pa (卵葩, LP) with its hands, if I may use these ugly words," a fuming Chen said. \nIn the Hoklo language (also known as Taiwanese), lan pa means "testicles"; saying that someone holds another's lan pa means that he is fawning over that person. \nChen was speaking during a meeting with a pro-independence group which had requested that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs change the name of Taiwan's representative office in Japan to better express Taiwan's sovereignty. \nChen lamented Taiwan's status in the international community, saying "even a tiny garden country like Singapore, which only has 3 million people, can criticize us." \n"Singapore is a country only as big as a piece of snot," he added. \nThe minister, who returned from the US yesterday, was clearly irritated by Yeo's speech in the 59th session of the UN General Assembly in New York last Friday. \nYeo told the General Assembly that "the push towards independence by certain groups in Taiwan is most dangerous because it will lead to war with mainland China and drag in other countries ... At stake is the stability of the entire Asia-Pacific region." \nTaiwan's 12th bid to join the UN failed earlier this month. \nQuoting Yeo's statement to the pro-independence group yesterday, Chen said people in Taiwan need to persevere if they want to survive. \n"Where is justice in the world? This world has no justice," Chen said. "When [Singaporean Prime Minister] Lee Hsien Loong (李顯龍) visited us two months ago, we treated him very well. He came under tremendous pressure [from China] after the trip." \nChina's pressure influenced Singapore to make the speech in the UN, but "Yeo's remarks went too far," the minister complained. \nBut Chen said Yeo had done at least one good thing by delivering the UN speech. \n"Yeo mentioned that some people in Taiwan want independence," Chen said. "Many countries probably didn't know there are people in Taiwan desiring independence before Yeo talked about it." \nThanks to Yeo's statement, these countries would now "realize our ambition" to achieve independence, he said. \nThe independence group had appealed to Chen to change the name of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in Japan by replacing the word "Taipei" with "Taiwan." The group said the name downgraded the country's status as a state. It asked the ministry to negotiate with the Japanese government about the name change as soon as possible. \n"I think the group made the right appeal," Chen said. "Many of us are not clear what our national title is. Even I, as foreign minister, often forget the names of our overseas representative offices. This is ridiculous." \nChen was referring to the various names Taiwan's overseas representative offices have been forced to adopt to prevent political pressure from China being applied on those countries. \nMeanwhile, the minister also said that the arrest of Donald Keyser, the former US deputy assistant secretary for East Asian and Pacific affairs, would not affect Taipei-Washington relations. Chen stressed that Taiwan wanted to maintain good ties with the US. \n"Taiwan has no reason to steal classified information from the US," he said.
TRICKED INTO MOVING: Local governments in China do not offer any help, and Taiwanese there must compete with Chinese in an unfamiliar setting, a researcher said Beijing’s incentives for Taiwanese businesspeople to invest in China are only intended to lure them across the Taiwan Strait, after which they receive no real support, an expert said on Sunday. Over the past few years, Beijing has been offering a number of incentives that “benefit Taiwanese in name, while benefiting China in reality,” a cross-strait affairs expert said on condition of anonymity. Strategies such as the “31 incentives” are intended to lure Taiwanese talent, capital and technology to help address China’s economic issues while also furthering its “united front” efforts, they said. Local governments in China do not offer much practical
Police have detained a Taoyuan couple suspected of over the past two months colluding with human trafficking rings and employment scammers in Southeast Asia to send nearly 100 Taiwanese jobseekers to Cambodia. At a media briefing in Taipei yesterday, the Criminal Investigation Bureau presented items seized from the couple, including alleged victims’ passports, forged COVID-19 vaccination records, mobile phones, bank documents, checks and cash. The man, surnamed Tsai (蔡), and his girlfriend, surnamed Tsan (詹), were taken into custody last month, after police at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport stopped four jobseekers from boarding a flight to Phnom Penh, said Dustin Lee (李泱輯),
PUBLIC POLL: More than half believe Chinese drills would make Taiwanese less willing to unify with China, while 36 percent said an invasion was highly unlikely Half of Taiwanese support independence, according to the results of a poll released yesterday by the Taiwanese Public Opinion Foundation, which also found that President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) support rating fell by 7 percentage points. Fifty percent of respondents supported independence, 25.7 percent supported maintaining the “status quo” and 11.8 percent supported unification, while 12.1 percent had no opinion, did not know or refused to answer, the foundation said. Support for independence is the new mainstream opinion, regardless of which party is in power, foundation chairman Michael You (游盈隆) said. Insinuations that Taiwan wants to maintain the “status quo” are a fabrication that
BILINGUAL PLAN: The 17 educators were recruited under a program that seeks to empower Taiwanese, the envoy to the Philippines said The Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the Philippines on Thursday hosted a send-off event for the first group of English-language teachers from the country who were recruited for a Ministry of Education-initiated program to advance bilingual education in Taiwan. The 14 teachers and three teaching assistants are part of the Taiwan Foreign English Teacher Program, which aims to help find English-language instructors for Taiwan’s public elementary and junior-high schools, the office said. Seventy-seven teachers and 11 teaching assistants from the Philippines have been hired to teach in Taiwan in the coming school year, office data showed. Among the first group is 57-year-old