Electronic visas launched
An electronic visa application system was launched yesterday that is to be available to citizens of 27 countries during the first stage of the system’s implementation, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. The facility is aimed at promoting tourism by streamlining visa application procedures, the ministry said. In the first stage, travelers from the designated countries would only be allowed to apply for electronic visas for the purposes of business travel, tourism, short visits to relatives and participation in international conferences, it said. The 27 nations include Turkey, Macedonia and Brunei and 21 of Taiwan’s 22 diplomatic allies (excluding the Holy See), the ministry said, adding that the other three countries on the list are Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, which offer Taiwan visa-waiver treatment.
Taoyuan touts festival
A national lantern competition being held as part of this year’s Taiwan Lantern Festival has drawn more than 800 entries, according to the Taoyuan City Government. The festival is to take place in the plaza in front of Taoyuan high-speed railway station from Feb. 22 to March 6. Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦) said this would be the first time in its 27-year history that the Taiwan Lantern Festival is to take place in Taoyuan. He said the festival would feature six main areas: the Smart Technology Lantern Area, the Fairytale Kingdom Lantern Area, the Taoyuan Story Lantern Corridor, the Diverse Exchange Lantern Area, the New Peach Blossom Spring Lantern Area and the Religious Prayer Lantern Area. The festival is traditionally held around the 15th day of the first month of the lunar calendar, or 14 days after the Lunar New Year.
Taiwan might be China’s next target after it has “walled off” Hong Kong from the rest of the world with its new national security legislation, Academia Sinica Institute of Sociology fellow Wu Jieh-min (吳介民) said on Thursday. At a seminar organized by the Economic Democracy Union, the Taiwan Association for Human Rights, the Hong Kong Outlanders and the Judicial Reform Foundation, Wu said that the legislation is simultaneously a fig leaf concealing Beijing’s autocratic rule in Hong Kong and a figurative “Berlin Wall,” denying democratic countries access to Hong Kong. Wu said it is evident that Taiwan would be China’s next target. The
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb
The National Taiwan Museum’s Railway Department Park in Taipei is to open to the public today. The park in Datong District (大同) near the North Gate (北門, Beimen) is one of the museum’s four branches. During the Japanese colonial era, the site housed the railway department of the Office of the Governor-General of Taiwan’s Bureau of Transportation. After World War II, it served as the headquarters for the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) for several decades. In 2007, it was listed as a national monument under the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法). At an opening ceremony yesterday, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung