Staff writer, with CNAA Taiwanese man and two Indonesians have been arrested for illegally dumping the body of a deceased colleague last month in Chiayi County’s Shueishang Township (水上), police said on Wednesday. Police were able to link the suspects — a Taiwanese man, surnamed Chen (陳), and two Indonesians who were working illegally — with the van, Shen said. However, he became ill on his first day of work on Sept. 23, experiencing what his colleges suspected was heat stroke. The three men are suspected to have driven Karimullah’s body to the banana plantation and dumped it in the early hours of Sept. 24, he added. With the assistance of Vietnamese police, Lu was arrested at a Taiwanese restaurant in Binh Duong Province on Tuesday, the bureau’s International Criminal Affairs Division said.
By Chen Wei-han / Staff reporterThe Cabinet and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators yesterday finalized a draft bill that would allow the government to auction vacant private land in industrial parks in a bid to solve an industrial land shortage. The Cabinet on Saturday last week proposed a draft amendment to the Statute for Industrial Innovation (產業創新條例) that stipulates compulsory auction of vacant private land in industrial areas to free more space for factories and businesses. Owners of vacant plots of land would be charged a maintenance fee that is five times the average industrial park maintenance fee and given a two-year grace period to properly utilize the land, Hsu said. For example, you cannot build whatever you want on private land, you have to comply with construction and land-use laws,” he said. The bureau also needs to draft a countermeasure to prevent land owners building nonoperational plants on land to deceive the government, Shen said.
By Shih Hsiao-kuang and Jonathan Chin / Staff reporter, with staff writerLegislators yesterday criticized the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) for avoiding references to the Republic of China (ROC) in its congratulatory letter to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) ahead of its 19th National Congress. The KMT dated a letter to the CCP “October 17, 106 (2017),” without adding “Year of the ROC,” which is customary when using the ROC calendar year, which began in 1911 with the founding of the ROC. The KMT and the CCP have a “mutual understanding” to avoid making references to the ROC and the People’s Republic of China in well-wishing notes, Hung said. “This letter shows that attempt to pry the name ‘China’ from the CCP is a nonstarter. “The KMT’s flattering self-characterization of what it did as in ‘the spirit of the 1992 consensus’ is utter nonsense.
By Diane Baker / Staff reporterThe annual Dream Parade will fill the streets between the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial and Ketagalan Boulevard in Taipei tomorrow afternoon with a bit of Brazilian carnival, Mardi Gras and Burning Man zaniness. Each year the parade is centered around a different theme that seeks to embody the unique mix that is the heart of Tsai’s dream for his community: community building, creativity and pageantry. The theme this year is “Crazy Village,” and teams of float builders, artistisans, musicians and performers from Japan, Indonesia, Vietnam, China, France, India and Brazil were invited. ■ The starting point is Liberty Square; participants will move up Zhongshan S Road (中山南路) to Renai Road (仁愛路), where they turn right and head toward Linsen S Road (林森南路) before making a U-turn that sends them back to Ketagalan Boulevard. ■ There will be a post-parade party with live music on Ketagalan Boulevard from 6pm to 9pm.
AP, BARCELONA, SpainThe Spanish government yesterday immediately rejected a threat by Catalonia’s leader to declare independence unless talks are held, calling a special Cabinet session for the weekend to activate measures to take control of the region’s semi-autonomous powers. “If the central government persists in impeding dialogue and continuing its repression, Catalonia’s parliament may proceed ... with a vote to formally declare independence,” Puigdemont’s letter said. It allows for central authorities to take over the semi-autonomous powers of any of the nation’s 17 regions, including Catalonia. The Cabinet meeting would “approve the measures that will be sent to the Senate to protect the general interest of all Spaniards,” the statement said. The Spanish government said that Puigdemont has not offered any clarity in his replies.
By Jason Pan / Staff reporterProsecutors yesterday indicted a South Korean assistant professor at National Chengchi University for alleged sexual harassment of his female students. The case came to light in June when two female students made accusations about groping and later filed complaints with police. A female student surnamed Yeh (葉) testified that Park took advantage of a one-on-one situation in his office to touch and grope her several times, prosecutors said. He also pinched my cheek and my waist several times, despite my resistance,” Yeh said. If you want me, just let me know.”Another female student gave a similar account, prosecutors said.
Speaking less than a month before Trump is due to make his first state visit to China, Tillerson said the US had begun to discuss creating alternatives to Chinese infrastructure financing in Asia. “We expect Pakistan to take decisive action against terrorist groups based there that threaten its own people and the broader region,” Tillerson said. A senior US Department of State official defended the timing of the speech, saying Tillerson also said he wanted a constructive relationship with China. “For many decades the United States has supported China’s rise,” the official said. “China will never develop itself at the expense of other countries,” Lu told a regular briefing yesterday.
By Lauly Li / Staff reporterThe Legislature’s Economics Committee yesterday passed a draft bill aiming to attract more foreign professionals to work in Taiwan. We hope this draft can change that, and attract and retain foreign professionals,” Chen told a question-and-answer session at the committee meeting. The council estimates the bill could increase the number of foreign professionals in Taiwan by 1,800 people per year, Chen said. The length of employment for foreign professionals is to be extended from three years to five years. Foreign professionals whose annual income exceeds NT$3 million (US$99,239) would only be taxed on half of their annual income for three years, the proposal said.
The Executive Yuan planned the restructuring to downsize its subordinate agencies from 37 to 29, but more time is needed to complete six remaining mergers and upgrades. The Cabinet announced that it would extend the expiration date of the Provisional Act for Adjustment of Functions and Organizations of the Executive Yuan (行政院功能業務與組織調整暫行條例) from Jan. 31 next year to Jan. 31, 2020. The Cabinet has proposed upgrading the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) to a “ministry of environmental protection and resources management” by merging soil and water conservation authorities and possibly forestry agencies with the EPA, which would make it the largest Cabinet ministry. Further negotiation is needed to organize the mergers and upgrades, the Cabinet said. Meanwhile, the Cabinet has abolished the Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission, which was merged with the Ministry of Culture on Sept. 15.
By William Hetherington / Staff writer, with CNAMinister of the Interior Yeh Jiunn-rong (葉俊榮) yesterday said the government plans to introduce national identity cards with integrated circuits (IC) within one year. The Ministry of the Interior must carefully evaluate the rights and responsibilities of various government bodies regarding IC cards, Yeh said, adding that the ministry is planning to hold public forums and seek public feedback by telephone. The ministry wants to implement IC cards to bring Taiwan in line with the worldwide trend of issuing digital identification, Yeh said. No contractors have been selected to develop the IC card system as yet, but the ministry would place strong emphasis on transparency and data protection, Yeh said. “The selection process will be reasonable and fair, but we have to be sure there is nothing to worry about in terms of information security,” Yeh said.
Officers who reach the service length limit appropriate to their rank before being promoted would be discharged without receiving full benefits. After discussions with the Ministry of National Defense, the committee resolved to increase the length of service for field-grade officers. In response to reports that the military is not retaining enough officers, the committee proposed several schemes to increase the maximum length of service. Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Lo Chih-cheng (羅致政) proposed to increase for lieutenants and captains from 10 years and 15 years respectively, to 15 committee and 17 years. The committee also passed an additional resolution that would allow lieutenants and captains to apply for merit-based deferments on forced retirement.
Staff writer, with CNAThe US on Wednesday called on the two sides of the Taiwan Strait to conduct constructive dialogue to settle their differences, after Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) again emphasized the so-called “1992 consensus” as Beijing’s basis for cross-strait talks. “We encourage the authorities in Beijing and Taipei to engage in constructive dialogue that seeks a peaceful resolution of differences acceptable to the people of both sides of the Taiwan Strait on the basis of dignity and respect,” US Department of State Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs spokesperson Grace Choi said. “We continue to urge patience, flexibility and creativity on both sides,” she added. “Recognize the historical fact of the ‘1992 consensus’ and that the two sides both belong to ‘one China’ and then our two sides can conduct dialogue to address, through discussion, the concerns of the people of both sides,” Xi said. However, Tsai has only said that she respects the historical fact that the cross-strait talks took place and that some understandings were reached.
By Shelley Shan / Staff reporterAnti-gambling activists and representatives from various religious groups yesterday urged Kinmen residents to return home and vote “no” to legalized gambling in a referendum scheduled for Saturday next week. If people in Kinmen [County] also choose to veto the legalization of gambling, it would de facto abolish Article 10-2 of the Offshore Islands Development Act [離島建設條例], which forms the legal basis for opening a casino on outlying islands,” he said. People on Kinmen have lived through wars, Yang said, adding that future generations on the island should not have to live through disasters caused by gambling. Casinos allow people to make money without having to earn it themselves, Willy said, adding that Kinmen should develop and progress normally. The government should increase flights and shipping services for people to return home and vote in the referendum, Taiwan Private School Employee Union chairman Wang Hong-nan (王宏男) said.
Reuters, BEIJINGForeign companies in China have welcomed the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to set up cells in their firms, a senior official said yesterday, though some executives have expressed concern about the party’s growing role in their operations. The presence of party units has long been a fact of doing business in China, where the law requires companies, including foreign firms, to set up a party organization. Party cells in foreign firms were well-received as a way of helping them understand Chinese policies and resolving disputes, CCP Organization Department deputy head Qi Yu (齊玉) told a news conference on the sidelines of the party’s 19th National Congress in Beijing. “The vast majority of investors welcome and support having party organization activities in their company,” he said. About 32 Chinese companies with shares traded in Hong Kong have proposed changes to their legal structure to make the party an adviser to their board.
People hoping to spot Uranus should look for a blue-green body, visible to the naked eye when looking to the southeastern sky. At the same time, the Orionid meteor shower, which appears to originate in the constellation Orion, could produce up to 50 shooting stars per hour tomorrow, with the peak period expected from 10pm to early Sunday morning. “The Orionid meteor shower is very reliable, plus the number of shooting stars it produces has been increasing in the past few years,” museum researcher Lee Chin (李瑾) said. The Orionid meteor shower happens annually when the Earth plows through dusty debris from Halley’s Comet, named after astronomer Edmond Halley, who determined the comet’s periodicity and contributed to further knowledge about the solar system. To make it easier for the public to observe Uranus and the meteor shower, the museum said it would grant the public exclusive access to its high-power telescope between 7pm and 9pm tomorrow.