Chiu Yi sentenced
The Kaohsiung District Court yesterday sentenced an opposition lawmaker to 18 months in prison for his involvement in riots after the 2004 presidential elections. The court found that Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chiu Yi (邱毅) had climbed on a truck which rammed a courthouse gate in the city during widespread protests against the narrow election victory of President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁). Chiu said he was trying to restrain overly zealous protesters, who claimed that Chen had staged a pre-election shooting to secure his win. Subsequent court hearings rejected the accusations against Chen. Chiu was not in court for yesterday's verdict, and it was not immediately known whether he would file an appeal.
Flower festival begins
The Yangmingshan Flower Festival began yesterday, with vast groves of blossoming cherry and apricot trees, azaleas and camellias likely to draw a large number of people this weekend. In addition to enjoying the colorful festival during the day, this year the public will be able to appreciate the beauty of the flowers at night as well, as several areas of Yangmingshan National Park will be lit up. To reduce the problem of traffic jams, visitors are strongly advised to use public transport to reach the park. For more information on traffic controls and bus routes for the festival, visit the Taipei City Government's Web site at english.taipei.gov.tw/dot/index.jsp.
Did Jay dodge service?
Pop sensation Jay Chou (周杰倫) is being investigated on suspicion of faking a spinal ailment to avoid serving compulsory military service, a prosecutor said yesterday. In response to a court subpoena, Chou's attorney submitted a report last month to explain the pop heartthrob's health condition, prosecutor Wu Tsung-liang (吳宗樑) said. "He made some clarifications in the report, and we will determine whether they are reliable or not," Lin said. Chou's agent at Alfa Music was not immediately available for comment.
No KMT cash for 228 victims
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday acknowledged the party's political responsibility for the 228 Incident, but disagreed that it should compensate victims. "Although the KMT was the then-ruling party, it was not directly involved in the event ... The decision to send troops to suppress the riot was made by the government," Ma said yesterday after attending an exhibition at the Taipei 228 Memorial Museum in his capacity as Taipei mayor. The exhibition features documents and photographs of riots taking place in southern Taiwan in 1947.
ETC decision overturned
Taiwan's High Court yesterday ruled that the Taiwan Area National Freeway Bureau had made the wrong decision when it evaluated Far East Electronic Toll Collection Co as "the most appropriate applicant" for the freeway electronic toll-collection (ETC) system, and revoked the decision. According to a news release from the court, the judgement said that the bureau's evaluation "violated the principles of quality and was not in the public interest" and therefore should be revoked. If the bureau loses the case on appeal, this would throw into doubt who should be in charge of the ETC system.
WAR FUNDING: A report by UK and Ukrainian defense analysts said that Taiwanese exports of a compound used in gunpowder have been helping Russia propagate its war About 20 percent of nitrocellulose — a compound used in gunpowder — imported into Russia has been sourced from Taiwan, a joint British-Ukrainian investigative report showed. Nitrocellulose is a key component of smokeless gunpowder, and the EU has banned export of the compound to Russia due to its ongoing war of aggression against Ukraine. The report said that nitrocellulose produced in Taiwan makes its way to Russia by passing through other countries such as Turkey. Only one company, T.N.C. Industrial Co (台硝), was named in the report, which also named China and Germany as key sources of the compound for
ROAD SINKING: The road surface of Qingcheng Street near the intersection with Xingan Street in Taipei’s Songshan District collapsed on Friday at about 9pm Grouting was yesterday used to repair a section of road in Taipei, after work on a construction site caused the surface to partially collapse on Friday evening, the Taipei Construction Management Office said yesterday, adding that nearby buildings were not affected. The road surface of Qingcheng Street near the intersection with Xingan Street in Taipei’s Songshan District (松山) collapsed at about 9pm on Friday. When police arrived they found four cars parked by the roadside tilting to one side. Police estimated the area that had subsided was about 4m by 30m, and was about 1.5m deep. They cordoned off the surrounding area
A Singaporean social media streamer who goes by the pseudonym Kiaraakitty faked an egg attack by an alleged passerby during a livestream in Kaohsiung on Feb. 9, the city’s police department said on Saturday. The department was responding to the streamer’s claim earlier this month that a stranger had thrown eggs at her during a recent visit to Kaohsiung. Kiaraakitty is known for posting provocative content on livestreaming sites such as Twitch and Discord, as well as other social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and YouTube. She also posts on paid adult content Web site OnlyFans. In the video dated Feb. 9,
TAIPEI WATCHING: The speedboat incident must be studied to prevent such incidents from recurring, president-elect William Lai was quoted as saying China’s launch of regular coast guard patrols in the Taiwan Strait after two Chinese sailors died fleeing from the Taiwanese coast guard is unlikely to trigger an escalation, analysts said yesterday. Beijing’s actions are aimed at applying pressure on Taipei and signaling its displeasure at president-elect William Lai (賴清德), not to raise the tensions in the Strait, Institute of National Defense and Security Research fellow Su Tzu-yun (蘇紫雲) said. The situation in the Taiwan Strait is “not particularly hot” as coast guards in the region have used water cannons and ramming during confrontations with foreign ships on multiple occasions, he said. Taiwan should