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.
HOT-SPRING RETREAT: A hotel in Japan incurred a loss of about US$1,846 after a Taiwanese man failed to show up for his reservation due to a misunderstood message A Taiwanese man who failed to show up for a hotel reservation in Japan has apologized and offered compensation, the hotel said yesterday. The man, surnamed Lee (李), reserved a room at the Yufuin Tsubaki hot-spring hotel in Oita for the Lunar New Year holiday, but failed to show up on Friday. Lee yesterday called the hotel to apologize and offered to compensate the losses caused by his failure to show up, a hotel employee surnamed Yashiro said. Lee’s wife also called on Sunday to apologize, she said. Lee had booked a two-night stay with upscale seafood and beef meals, the hotel said. His
Two Taiwanese Americans were among those killed in a mass shooting at a dance studio in Monterey Park, California, on Saturday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Monday. The Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Los Angeles (TECO LA) said it contacted local authorities, who confirmed that two of the 11 killed in the shooting were Taiwanese Americans. “TECO LA conveys our heartfelt condolences to the victims and their families, and sends our prayers to the injured for a speedy recovery,” it said in a statement. The office said it is assisting the relatives of one of the victims to travel from
A senior US senator on Monday questioned the willingness of some US allies to help defend Taiwan in the event of a Chinese invasion. Although Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) expects the US and Japan to respond in a war in the Taiwan Strait, he was “a little less confident what our other allies would do,” US Senator John Cornyn said. Australia and New Zealand have voiced support for Taiwan, but it “is a far cry from committing troops to repel an invasion,” Cornyn said during a discussion on China, Russia and the state of US military readiness at a forum hosted
Whisky connoisseurs are a rapidly growing demographic in Taiwan, driving prices ever higher as collectors vie for the most coveted editions. Although not a new pastime, whisky collection has been picking up steam in recent years. According to the Scotch Whisky Association, Taiwan was the third-largest buyer of Scotch whisky in 2021 in monetary terms. One collector, surnamed Fu (傅), said there are many types of whisky that are ripe for collecting. One that has skyrocketed in price in recent years is the Macallan 12-year-old Gran Reserva, which bears a striking purple label, said Fu, who has more than 10 years of experience as