Tropical storm forms
Tropical Storm Malakas formed at 8am yesterday, becoming the first tropical cyclone in the northwest Pacific this year, the Central Weather Bureau said, adding that the chance of the storm directly impacting Taiwan is low. The center of the storm was situated at sea off the southern coast of Guam at 8am, about 2,000km east of Taiwan. It was moving north-northwest at 4kph, the bureau said. The storm had maximum sustained winds of 18m per second, with gusts of up to 25m per second, the bureau said, adding that the storm would most likely move toward the south of Japan.
Eric Chu to visit the US
The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) yesterday said that KMT Chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫) is to visit the US at the end of next month, and would speak about the party’s policies on the US, China and cross-strait relations. Chu is to hold discussions on those issues with US government officials, academics and experts in Washington, New York, Boston, San Francisco and Los Angeles, KMT Department of International Affairs director Alexander Huang (黃介正) said. While in Washington, Chu would unveil a plaque to mark the reopening of the KMT’s liaison office in the US after a hiatus of more than 13 years, said Huang, who is to head the office. Chu’s visit is not for publicity purposes, but rather is aimed at rebranding the party’s liaison office in Washington, which was closed in 2008 after the KMT’s Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) was elected president, Huang said. While in the US, Chu plans to give public speeches on the KMT’s policies regarding China, the US, and cross-strait and international affairs, he said.
SEARCH AND RESCUE
Two bodies recovered
Taiwan has recovered two bodies after a ship carrying six South Koreans went missing in the Taiwan Strait, and search and rescue operations were continuing, Taipei and Seoul said yesterday. Taiwanese authorities said they received distress signals from the Kyoto No. 1 at about 9:50am on Thursday about 29km west of Taiwan, the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, adding that all six people aboard were South Korean nationals. The Sierra Leone-flagged ship was on its way to Indonesia’s Batam from Busan and it was towing the Kyoto No. 2, which has been found in the area. The National Rescue Command Center in Taiwan said that the ship had sent a distress signal in waters near Penghu, and it had sent ships and aircraft to look for it. Fishers discovered the two bodies, whose identities have yet to be confirmed, and efforts are continuing to find the other four people, it said.
Exhibition opens in NY
An exhibition marking the completion of the Taipei Music Center opened in New York on Wednesday, drawing on the relationship between its American architectural origins and its adoption into Taiwanese culture. “Lyrical Urbanism: The Taipei Music Center” at Cooper Union’s Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture features mural-sized photographs, architectural models, drawings and audiovisual media that explore the decade-long design process, the center said. The center, which houses a concert hall that can hold up to 5,000 people, a cultural cube presenting the history of popular music in Taiwan and a creative hub, was developed by New York-based Reiser+Umemoto, RUR Architecture. The exhibition runs until April 29.
VOTERS’ CHOICE: The DPP’s Chen and independent candidate Huang conceded defeat before 7:20pm, with Chiang pledging to remain humble and do his best Legislator Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) yesterday won the Taipei mayoral election, with the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) candidate defeating the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) pick, former minister of health and welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), and former Taipei deputy mayor Vivian Huang (黃珊珊), an independent. After polling stations closed at 4pm, the Taipei Election Commission issued a preliminary estimate that voter turnout in the city was about 64 percent, slightly lower than in 2018. Chiang, 43, is to be the youngest Taipei mayor ever, with the KMT regaining the capital after eight years. Chen had an exceptionally high national approval rating when he was head
FAMILY BACKGROUND: Chiang was effective in running a cautious campaign to avoid making mistakes, waiting for other candidates to slip up, an analyst said Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Taipei Mayor-elect Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) stood out among his rivals due to his energy, his die-hard supporters and his relative openness to discuss issues such as same-sex marriage, a political analyst said yesterday. Chiang’s campaign was also aided by his family’s background in politics, which helped him garner greater support in Taipei where there is a large KMT base, said the analyst, who chose to remain anonymous. “Chiang is also not a typical KMT member when it comes to certain issues, such as gay marriage, and his more open stance widened his support base — particularly among young
First-time politician Mai Yamada’s (山田摩衣) Japanese name has attracted attention in Chinese-language media after her win in the New Taipei City Council election on Saturday. Born to a Taiwanese mother and Japanese father, the 32-year-old Taiwanese-Japanese stood out after becoming one of nine elected city councilors in Banciao District (板橋) in the nation’s local government elections on Saturday. Although she has a Japanese name, she grew up and was educated in Taiwan, Yamada said, adding that “Taiwan is my home.” Before running for local government, Yamada, who speaks fluent Japanese and English, was Legislative Speaker You Si-kun’s (游錫堃) secretary. She has been involved in
Mask easing: Teachers are allowed to take their masks off while lecturing indoors, but students should keep theirs on, as COVID-19 measures ease this week The Ministry of Education (MOE) yesterday released new on-campus COVID-19 prevention guidelines, stating that masks can be taken off while exercising, singing, dancing, performing, taking photographs, dining, drinking, video and voice recording, hosting events, presenting speeches and lecturing outdoors. Large outdoor events organized by schools should comply with the mask regulations issued by the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), it added. The new guidelines came into effect yesterday, and people in Taiwan are no longer required to wear masks outdoors for the first time since May 19 last year. The CECC announced the easing of the mask mandate on Monday, adding that it