Plum rains to start
Though the temperature reached 37.9 degrees Celsius at Taitung County's Ta Wu Mountain (大武山) yesterday, the annual plum rain season is expected to begin in Taiwan today. The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said yesterday the chance of rain was high islandwide in the coming week. The chance of showers or scattered rain in northern Taiwan is 80 percent, and 60 percent in central Taiwan. Mountainous areas in southern Taiwan will see torrential rain, the CWB said.
Tour bus crash kills four
A road accident in Miaoli County left four passengers dead and several other injured. A tour bus with 29 passengers, all staff members of Kaohsiung's Hsiung Ling Construction Company (雄菱工程公司), was on a tour in Miaoli. The bus reportedly fell into a valley near Miaoli's Shishan Farm (獅山農場) yesterday at around 5:20pm. Rescuers managed to get 27 people out of the bus, while two passengers were still stuck in the wreckage as of press time last night.
■ China relations
New Party China-bound
New Party Chairman Yok Mu-ming (郁慕明) said yesterday that the party will also dispatch a delegation to visit China following Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Lien Chan's (連戰) ongoing China visit and People First Party Chairman James Soong's (宋楚瑜) upcoming trip on May 5. According to Yok, the New Party's planned trip will take place either this month or next. Yok and his daughter Yok Cheng-yi (郁正儀) appeared in Shanghai's Shangri-la Hotel yesterday to receive Lien.
TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT: A US Air Force KC-135 tanker came less than 1,000 feet of an EVA plane and was warned off by a Taipei air traffic controller, a report said A US aerial refueling aircraft came very close to an EVA Airways jet in the airspace over southern Taiwan, a military aviation news Web site said. A report published by Alert 5 on Tuesday said that automatic dependent surveillance–broadcast (ADS-B) data captured by planfinder.net on Wednesday last week showed a US Air Force KC-135 tanker “coming less than 1,000 feet [305m] vertically with EVA Air flight BR225 as both aircraft crossed path south of Taiwan” that morning. The report included an audio recording of a female controller from the Taipei air traffic control center telling the unidentified aircraft that it was
A US aircraft carrier group led by the USS Theodore Roosevelt has entered the South China Sea to promote “freedom of the seas,” the US military said yesterday, as tensions between China and Taiwan raise concerns in Washington. US Indo-Pacific Command said in a statement that the strike group entered the South China Sea on Saturday, the same day Taiwan reported a large incursion of Chinese bombers and fighter jets into its air defense identification zone near the Pratas Islands (Dongsha Islands, 東沙群島). The US military said the carrier strike group was in the South China Sea, a large part of which
STRATEGIC MISTAKE: Beijing’s deployment of aircraft near Taiwan proves the ‘China threat theory’ that sees it attempting to destabilize the region, an analyst said China on Saturday and yesterday sent a record number of military aircraft into the nation’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ), in what analysts said was an attempt to flex its military might for US President Joe Biden. Thirteen Chinese warplanes flew into Taiwan’s southwestern ADIZ on Saturday and 15 entered yesterday, the highest number observed in a single day this year, the Ministry of National Defense said. On Saturday, eight Xian H-6K bombers, four Shenyang J-16 fighters and a Y-8 anti-submarine aircraft, entered the ADIZ, while yesterday there were two Y-8s, two Su-30s, four J-16s, six J-10 fighters and a Y-8 reconnaissance
DISPOSING MYTHS: A new constitution would better reflect reality, as the current one was drafted ‘in and for China,’ without the consent of Taiwanese, advocates said Independence advocates yesterday launched the Taiwan New Constitution Alliance to promote drafting a new, localized constitution. “This is a historic moment for Taiwan. Drafting a new constitution is the most important task Taiwanese face,” veteran independence advocate Koo Kwang-ming (辜寬敏) said at the inaugural event in Taipei. “Although the Democratic Progressive Party is in power, its authority is based on the Republic of China [ROC] Constitution, which has no connection to Taiwan,” said the 95-year-old Koo, a former presidential adviser. “The historic task of drafting a new constitution depends on efforts by all Taiwanese,” Koo said. “A constitution for a sovereign, independent Taiwan