By Chen Wei-han / Staff reporterThe Executive Yuan is to immediately establish an ad hoc commission for the promotion of transitional justice to disclose historical data and remove authoritarian symbols, Premier William Lai (賴清德) said yesterday. “The establishment has to be completed in the shortest time possible to meet public expectations for transitional justice and reconciliation,” Lai said. The committee would be responsible for making political archives available, removing authoritarian symbols, redressing judicial injustice and investigating political persecution, Lai said. Presidential Office spokesman Alex Huang (黃重諺) said there are multiple ways to remove authoritarian symbols, including simple removal and renaming as well as preservation and reconstruction. That work would be undertaken by the transitional justice committee, Huang said.
“In Hengchun, marriage subsidies will no longer be just for public servants,” Hengchun Mayor Lu Yu-tung (盧玉棟) said. To qualify for the marriage subsidy, couples would have to be registered as township residents for a year before their wedding, he said. Residents who divorce and remarry would be able apply for the subsidy if their second marriage is to a different person, he added. In related news, New Taipei City’s Gongliao District (貢寮), site of the mothballed Fourth Nuclear Power Plant, is also facing a declining population, district administrator Chen Wen-chun (陳文俊) said. Gongliao had a population of 13, 540 in 2011, but now it has just 12,546 residents, Chen said.
Staff writer, with CNAEnvironmental groups are to rally against air pollution on Dec. 17 to demand that the central government better address the health hazard. An environmental protection alliance, including the Pingtung County Environmental Protection Alliance and the Kaohsiung branch of Air Clean Taiwan, on Tuesday listed four demands in regard to air pollution. They demanded that penalties for air pollution be raised and that the cap on state-run companies’ emissions be reduced by half. They also voiced their opposition to the burning of coal and amendments that have been made to laws regulating air pollution and environmental assessments. The Kaohsiung City Council yesterday passed a regulation saying schools are banned from hosting sporting events when air pollution is severe.
The hot spring is fascinating, but the real highlight is the tough journey to it, which is a stunningly scenic adventure. The jumping-off place for the hot spring is Huisun Forest Recreation Area (惠蓀林場), and a lane branching sharply off the main road through it, 600m after the service center. Look out for several small hot spring pools on the riverbank as you make your way upstream. Bright colors stain the rock faces of the gorge in several places as small hot spring sources seep out of the cliffs. In another couple of hundred meters, however, the river narrows and becomes more rugged again, and on the right a small cave in the cliff conceals Huisun hot spring.
AFP, BEIJINGThe IMF yesterday warned of brewing risks in China’s banking system as it found dozens of crucial lenders needed to beef up their protection against possible financial crises. Near the top of the list in the IMF study scrutinizing the stability of China’s financial system is the need for banks to increase their capital to ward off risks from mounting debt. China has largely relied on debt-fueled investment and exports to drive its tremendous economic growth, but the IMF said this model has reached its limits. Part of the problem lies in high-growth targets, the IMF said, which incentivize local governments to extend credit and protect failing companies. In some cases local banks face pressure to lend to politically important companies, as local governments aim to maintain high employment even if that means cash-bleeding enterprises continue to operate.
By Shelley Shan / Staff reporterThe Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) yesterday suspended plans to implement a policy requiring passengers to exit station platforms within 10 minutes after arriving by train. Following a public outcry, the agency on Wednesday said it would give commuters a three-month grace period before it starts fining people for loitering. “As the policy is likely to generate more disputes between railway staff and passengers, we have decided not to implement it for now,” it said. TRA staff would continue to ask people to quickly leave the platforms after their trains arrive, it said. Asking people to leave a station within 10 minutes of arrival during peak hours or holidays might also be a problem, they said.
By Noah Buchan / Staff ReporterPierre Haski says Taiwan’s hard-won democracy is not irreversible. Taiwan’s unique geopolitical situation with China and securing its hard-won democratic achievements at home will require strengthening the nation’s civil society and deepening press freedoms. “Illiberalism usually starts with attacks on press freedom and the independence of the judiciary,” Haski tells the Taipei Times. Haski’s main focus will be on Russia, which he finds “an interesting example of illiberal democracy.”FREEDOM VS MATERIAL CONDITIONSLecture Notes What: Is this the era of illiberal democracy? Haski, citing Hong Kong as an example, says Taiwan should not expect to be able to export its liberal political culture with its press freedoms and independent judiciary.
The Tainan City Government Bureau of Education has established the Tainan School Desk and Chairs Recycling Center in Liujia Junior High School, with a social club helping students interested in carpentry learn a specialized skill. The center has brought in teachers from the Nan Jeon University of Science and Technology departments of Interior Design and Creative Design to teach students how to design and work on products made of wood. Students are shown everything from being able to recognize different types of wood to product design, from the proper use of tools to product development, helping them to design and create their very own completely unique works. He added that, if you want to make the piece as good as it could be, you need to be focused on the task and to work as part of a team, and that this is something that you cannot learn from a textbook. (CNA, translated by Paul Cooper)台南市政府教育局在六甲國中成立「台南市課桌椅再生中心」，讓對木工有興趣的學生利用社團活動學得一技之長。該中心禮聘南榮科技大學室內設計與創意產品設計系的老師，指導學生設計與加工木製物品。從木材認識、產品設計、工具運用與產品開發，讓學生能設計並製作出獨一無二的作品。參加木工社團的學生陳玄佑表示，原本只想在暑假選一個社團參加，但在上課後，對於木工技藝有更深的認知與喜愛。從木材原料到成品的製作過程，可獲得很大的成就感。如果要把作品做到完善，還需要認真態度與團隊合作，這是在課本中學不到的。（中央社）
By Liam Gibson / Staff reporterThe majority of the dozen Taiwanese interviewed by the Taipei Times on Wednesday of last week believe that caning is a justifiable punishment for repeat drunk driving. Two days before the forum, the Taipei Times sampled opinions from passersby in and around National Taiwan University. The incident has generated heated debate and has been used by advocates as an example as to why caning is needed. HUMAN RIGHTS QUESTIONLast month Premier William Lai (賴清德) cast doubt over the proposal, saying caning might violate Taiwan’s human rights commitments. The NTU faculty member seconded Lai’s statement, adding that adopting caning would seriously impact Taiwan’s international reputation as a defender of human rights.
Ko told reporters that he was considering abolishing Chen’s administrative order that allowed illegal structures or modifications erected before 1995 to be registered with the city government and temporarily exempted them from demolition. Most illegal structures in Taipei predate Dec. 31, 1994, he said, adding: “I think it is inappropriate for every mayor to keep saying that illegal cases that occurred before he took office can be allowed to circumvent regulations. So, I am considering nullifying the ‘special pardon’ granted by Chen.”Chen took office as Taipei mayor on Dec. 24, 1994. However, illegal structures built in 1995 or later would be classified into three groups, with those that are considered major illegal structures or that pose a grave danger to the public to be demolished first, he said. A contributing factor to the fire was that an illegal rooftop addition above the fifth floor was exempted from demolition, Ko said, adding that illegal modifications to the fourth floor were never reported.
Staff writer, with CNAThe nation’s trade mission in Nigeria is to keep the same number of staff after it relocates from the capital, Abuja, to Lagos, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) official said on Tuesday. The Nigerian government in January ordered Taiwan to move its office from the capital, to change the name of the office to remove the title “Republic of China (Taiwan)” and to cut office staff, reportedly under pressure from China. The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs later lauded the move, saying it showed the African country’s “staunch support” of Bejing’s “one China” principle. Taipei responded by twice summoning the acting director of the Nigeria Trade Office in Taiwan to protest the African country’s moves against Taiwan’s interests, the ministry said. After the relocation, which is expected to be completed by the middle of this month, the ministry would ask the Taipei-based Nigeria Trade Office in Taiwan to move to another location based on the principles of equality and dignity, Lo said.
AFP, PARISManchester United and Juventus were among the sides to clinch a place in the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday, while Bayern Munich gained a measure of revenge over Paris Saint-Germain. United, Juventus, AS Roma and Basel all went through with victories in their final group games, but Atletico Madrid, the defeated finalists in 2014 and last year, were eliminated. Sporting drop into the Europa League. These situations, apart from the frustration of not being in the next round, will help the team move forward and onto the Europa League,” Simeone told beIN Sports Spain. PSG will be the happier side at winning the group, although possible last-16 opponents for them are Chelsea, Juventus and Real Madrid.
The airline’s operations and financial soundness once again became the focus of a meeting of the legislature’s Transportation Committee, following a report by the Chinese-language magazine Mirror Media that it might suspend flights due to a worsening financial situation. Loans that the airline had secured from banks to finance its operations could be problematic, as loans are supposedly given to carriers that provide reliable transportation, he said. He asked Hochen whether the airline would suspend flights as its financial situation worsens, saying that as it offers flights to the nation’s outlying islands, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications should have backup plans in case the airline suspends operations. Hochen said that the airline is not facing any threat that would cause it to suspend operations. The airline added one new aircraft to its fleet last month, Hochen said, adding that it has over the past four months met the CAA’s flight safety standards.
Hochen made the remarks at a meeting of the legislature’s Transportation Committee after facing criticism from lawmakers over the policy. The policy would reduce disputes with passengers when multiple trains arrive at a station at or about the same time, it said. Asking such people to leave a station within 10 minutes of arrival during peak hours might be a problem, he added. Hochen said that the time frame set by railway seemed too strict, adding that it should consider giving passengers some leniency under certain circumstances. Passengers would also be given a grace period before the policy is officially enforced, Hochen said, adding that the railway would enhance communication with passengers during that period.
BloombergClients of four top fund firms — Fidelity Investments, Charles Schwab Corp, TD Ameritrade Holding Corp and Wells Fargo & Co — on Monday faced technical glitches that prevented them from accessing some account information. The outages occurred as mutual fund and brokerage firms enter a busy period when investors grapple with year-end tax and financial matters. It was the second time in two weeks Fidelity customers were affected by Web site glitches. Several TD Ameritrade customers tweeted in the morning saying the company’s app was frozen and that the problem had cost them money. The posts prompted the company to respond online to those who complained but TD Ameritrade did not fully acknowledge the nature of the problem until late Monday.
December 05, 2017 15:56 UTC