Report remains unconfirmed
The Ministry of National Defense yesterday refused to confirm reports that the military had been instructed to manufacture up to 300 cruise missiles. When contacted by the Taipei Times for comment, officials from the ministry’s spokesman’s office would not confirm whether they had received the order, but said that it was their duty to follow government policy. The comments came in response to a report in yesterday’s Chinese-language China Times that quoted an unnamed military source as saying: “President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) has given the order for the production of 300 Hsiung Feng 2E cruise missiles.” However, the paper said it was not clear when the missiles would be put into service. The paper said that Hsiung Feng 2E, which was developed by the military-run Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology, has a range of around 600km. The missile could be launched on land or at sea, the paper said.
Ma ‘working hard’ on envoy
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said yesterday that the government was “working hard” to send a high level official to the annual meeting of the APEC forum scheduled to open in Lima, Peru, on Nov. 22. In an interview with CNA on Friday, Ma said that the annual APEC informal leadership meeting is attended by the heads of government of all the member economies except for Taiwan, which faces restrictions because of various factors. Saying that concerted efforts were being made to address this issue, Ma said that the government would soon announce its plans regarding sending an envoy to the APEC meeting. Pressure from China means that Taiwan has had to send a special envoy to represent the president at the annual APEC gathering in past years.
Koo returns from California
China Development Financial Holding Corp president Angelo Koo (辜仲瑩) returned to Taiwan from Los Angeles yesterday ahead of his likely questioning by prosecutors investigating charges of money laundering against the former first family. The Supreme Prosecutors’ Office Special Investigation Panel wants to talk to Koo about US$1 million that was wired from the company to the former first family’s foreign bank accounts. Koo arrived at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport at 7am. Upon his arrival, customs officers alerted prosecutors, but they decided not to detain him, instead asking him to wait for further notice over questioning. Panel spokesman Chen Yun-nan (陳雲南) said that prosecutors would speak to Koo before the end of the week.
Chen allegations probed
Prosecutors said yesterday they were looking into allegations that former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) removed more than 400 confidential national security documents from government files. Prosecutor Chen Yun-nan (陳雲南), director of the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office Special Investigation Panel, said the division would seek the assistance of leading national security agencies to investigate the allegations. “The division will not exclude the possibility of assigning the matter to a prosecutor to initiate a probe if the report is found to be true,” Chen Yun-nan said. Chen made the remarks in response to reporters’ questions about a report in yesterday’s Chinese-language China Times that the former president had spirited away 449 national security documents classified as “confidential” while he was in office.
At a campground in Nantou County, a team of women are using ropes to shimmy up a towering seven-story tall Chinaberry tree, fighting their fear of heights and reconnecting with nature. Tree climbing remains somewhat niche in Taiwan, but a growing number of women are embracing the challenge thanks to the island’s first international certified female climber arborist. Sylvia Hsu (許芢涵), 26, said she was inspired to set up her own women-only tree climbing classes after seeing the popularity of similar gatherings in Europe. “A women-only camp is a more relaxed environment,” she said. “I was hooked on trees after my first climb...
Police in Kaohsiung are investigating a possible murder after a woman’s body was found in a plastic container on Thursday. The bucket was found by a person operating an excavator on a construction site at a private lot next to the Ciaotou Sugar Refinery Station (橋頭糖廠站) on the Kaohsiung Mass Rapid Transit system. Police investigator Chen Jen-cheng (陳仁正) yesterday said police had reviewed missing person reports and have narrowed the identity of the victim down to about 20 possible people. Physical evidence suggested she might have been a Fongshan District (鳳山) woman surnamed Lin (林), who was about 60 years old when she
Taiwanese have donated more than NT$10 million (US$329,946) to fight the COVID-19 outbreak in Italy, following an appeal for help by a Yilan-based Italian priest to save his “other homeland.” Catholic Father Giuseppe Didone on Wednesday issued a public letter asking for donations to be made to the fundraising center of Camillian Saint Mary’s Hospital Luodong to purchase emergency provisions, including surgical masks and protective gowns, for medical personnel in Italy. Didone yesterday expressed his gratitude and said that he was touched by the love shown by Taiwanese. While state-funded hospitals in Italy are mostly adequately supplied, many local clinics are suffering from
Taiwanese sports are to return next weekend, with the baseball and soccer leagues starting their new seasons, although there are to be restrictions for spectators and protective measures due to COVID-19. The Chinese Professional Baseball League (CPBL) season was originally scheduled to begin on March 14, then pushed back to March 28, before settling on next Saturday. “To conform with the government’s mandate limiting crowds at outdoor events, we will strictly limit the total number of people at each league game at fewer than 200,” CPBL secretary-general Feng Shen-hsieng (馮勝賢) said. “This figure will include the players, coaches, team employees, ballpark