Wearing caps marked “A nostalgic trip of the 643rd Battalion,” the 31 veterans began singing an army song as they arrived at Kinmen Airport accompanied by relatives. At a special reception stand at the airport, each veteran was presented with a bottle of Kinmen kaoliang liquor. The Kinmen County Government is holding a series of events until Dec. 25 for veterans and family members in commemoration of the Aug. 23, 1958, bombardment. Among those returning for the anniversary events was Hung Mo-hsiung (洪末雄), 75, who served on the main island in 1964. Now using a wheelchair and accompanied by 12 family members, he was carrying a collection of photographs he had taken of Kinmen when he was stationed there.
AFP, HANOIFlash floods in Vietnam have now claimed at least 19 lives, as residents in affected areas sought safety in higher ground, the government said yesterday. Boasting a long coastline, Vietnam is battered by floods and storms every year, with hundreds of lives lost from the annual monsoon barrage. The remnants of Typhoon Son Tinh, now a tropical depression, made landfall on Wednesday night, the third tropical storm to hit Vietnam since the start of the year. The latest report from the country’s disaster office said that 19 people have been killed so far, with an additional 13 people unaccounted for. Floods and landslides from heavy rains have ranged far and wide and affected rural and urban areas, including the capital, Hanoi.
This year’s budget was NT$115.1 billion, including the items in the government’s Forward-looking Infrastructure Development Program. The Executive Yuan next year plans to allocate NT$97.6 billion for technological development and NT$18.7 billion for technological projects listed in the program, the sources said. Premier William Lai (賴清德) is expected to preside over cross-agency budget meetings today to finalize budget ceilings for all government agencies. Many outstanding researchers and academics in Taiwan have been recruited by foreign universities, Executive Yuan Office of Science and Technology Executive Secretary Tsai Zse-hong (蔡志宏) said. The Ministry of Science and Technology’s artificial intelligence (AI) innovative research center would receive a second-phase budget of NT$1.5 billion, while the budget of its third-phase space program has yet to be determined, the sources said.
By Jason Pan / Staff reporterIt was an all-Taiwanese affair at the end of the Singapore Open, with top-seeded badminton player Chou Tien-chen (周天成) defeating compatriot Hsu Jen-hao (許仁豪) in yesterday’s final. Hsu’s previous best in a world tour event was a semi-final exit at a BWF Super Series event. Chou won a hard-fought semi-final against Qiao Bin of China 21-12, 18-21, 21-16 on Saturday at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. In the other semi-final, Hsu hit his stride to power past Nguyen Tien Minh of Vietnam 21-15, 21-11. “It was the first time for me to get into the final of a Super Series event,” Hsu said.
AP, ROMEJeep executive Mike Manley is to be the new CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (FCA) after longtime leader Sergio Marchionne’s health suddenly deteriorated following surgery. Fiat Chrysler said Marchionne, 66, “will be unable to return to work” due to his health. He had been heading the Jeep brand since June 2009 and the Ram brand from October 2015. Marchionne was holding multiple leadership roles in the companies, notably as CEO of Fiat Chrysler, as well as CEO and chairman of Ferrari. Marchionne made his last major presentation as CEO of Fiat Chrysler last month, unveiling the company’s plans through 2022.
By Shelley Shan / Staff reporterThe Tourism Bureau yesterday denied that it subsidized visits by individual Southeast Asia tourists after a newspaper reported that there has been an increase in the number of Thai sex workers at unlicensed lounges in Taipei’s Wanhua District (萬華). The residents were quoted as blaming the government’s New Southbound Policy for the situation, saying that it is creating chaos. The bureau dismissed the allegation, saying that it never subsidizes individual tourist from Southeast Asian nations. These programs apply to all international tourists and do not solely benefit tourists from the nations targeted by the New Southbound Policy,” it said. The New Southbound Policy targets ASEAN members, as well as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Australia and New Zealand.
By William Hetherington / Staff writer, with CNAThe Central Weather Bureau yesterday said it expected a tropical depression, which hit the Philippine province of Ilocos Norte, to develop into Tropical Storm Wukong as it moves north toward Taiwan, and that a sea warning could be issued early this morning at the earliest. Tropical storm Ampil affected weather over northern Taiwan yesterday, and Wukong was expected to start affecting weather over southern Taiwan today, the bureau said. The bureau would continue to monitor developments and would announce a sea warning today if Wukong develops as expected, Li said. Rainfall is expected in eastern and northern Taiwan tomorrow and Tuesday as a result of the storm, he said. Meanwhile, Kaohsiung yesterday reported a rise in the price of crops due to the impending tropical storm and increased consumer demand over the weekend.
July 21, 2018 16:04 UTC
AFP, SAN FRANCISCOFacebook Inc, Google, Microsoft Corp and Twitter Inc on Friday unveiled plans to make it easier for users to take their personal data and leave one online service for another. The Data Transfer Project revealed by the companies responds to concerns about the growing influence of Internet platforms and Internet user concerns about control of their personal information shared online. “Users should be in control of their data on the Web, part of this is the ability to move their data,” the companies said on the project Web site. People can often download their data from online services without a guarantee that it will be possible or feasible to upload the information to a new service. Disclosure of the effort comes amid heightened scrutiny over the potential of Internet companies to abuse positions of power and the public’s right to control its online data.
AFP, SINGAPOREState actors were likely behind Singapore’s biggest-ever cyberattack to date, security experts said, citing the scale and sophistication of the hack. “A cyberespionage threat actor could leverage disclosure of sensitive health information ... to coerce an individual in [a] position of interest to conduct espionage” on its behalf, said Eric Hoh, Asia-Pacific president of cybersecurity firm FireEye. “A lot of information about a person’s health can be gleaned from the medications that they take,” Middleton told reporters yesterday. “Any nonpublic health information could be used for extortion. The hackers used a computer infected with malware to gain access to the database between June 27 and July 4 before administrators spotted “unusual activity,” authorities said.
By Sherry Hsiao / Staff writer, with CNAA Chinese academic on Friday called a speech by Mainland Affairs Council Minister Chen Ming-tong (陳明通) an “improvement” in terms of the Taiwanese government’s attitude toward cross-strait relations. East China Normal University professor Bao Chengke (包承柯) on Friday said he believes that the concepts of “one China” and that Taiwan and China share the same ethnicity emerged in Chen’s speech, which was an improvement. Discussions about cross-strait relations must reflect historical points, he added. Chen’s speech reiterated the basic attitude of President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) during her interview with the Chinese-language Liberty Times in January 2016, Bao said. Rather, Chen’s speech was strategic and made to emphasize to the US that Taiwan is the side that is maintaining the “status quo,” Bao said.
Xi’s Africa visit also highlights China’s sweeping Belt and Road Initiative that envisages linking Beijing to Africa, Europe and other parts of Asia via a network of ports, railways, power plants and economic zones. On his first visit to a West African country, Xi is to meet with Senegalese President Macky Sall. The stop highlights China’s interest both in Francophone Africa and in Atlantic Ocean ports, while Senegal positions itself as a gateway to the region. Xi then moves on to Rwanda, becoming the first Chinese president to visit the landlocked East African country, whose economy grew by 6.1 percent last year. He is to meet with Rwandan President Paul Kagame and visit a memorial for Rwanda’s 1994 genocide, which killed more than 800,000 people.
AP, NEW YORKUS stocks on Friday inched lower as bond yields jumped, a shift that helped banks, but hurt companies that pay big dividends. Stocks wobbled all week as investors reacted to solid company results, as well as heightened trade tensions. Stocks were not affected, but the dollar declined and short-term bond yields slipped, suggesting investors wondered if the Fed might raise interest rates more slowly. “If there’s a toss-up between raising and not raising [rates], you wonder what role these types of comments might possibly play,” Wells Fargo Investment Institute strategist Sameer Samana said. That helped banks, because bond yields are used to set interest rates on many kinds of loans, including mortgages.
By Han Cheung / Staff reporterJuly 23 to July 29Koo Chen-fu (辜振甫) only discussed the incident once in public. Some say he was being opportunistic, others say he did it to restore order and prevent further violence. Regardless, the family worked closely with the authorities and prospered under colonial rule. Chen’s questioning about the 1946 incident finally rattled the usually stoic Koo. “What’s so dishonorable about serving a groundless sentence?
AP, TOKYOThe Japanese National Diet on Friday approved a contentious law allowing up to three casino resorts to open in the wealthy nation and possibly lure more foreign visitors. The lower house passed it last month. It adds rules of operation to a law on casino promotion passed in 2016. The enactment of the “integrated resorts” law means that casinos could operate at resorts that include hotels, conference rooms and shopping malls by the mid-2020s. To address concerns about addiction, the law limits local residents to three casino visits per week and 10 per month.
By Lee Hsin-fang and Jake Chung / Staff reporters, with staff writerThe Executive Yuan’s annual expenditure for fiscal 2019 is expected to total NT$2 trillion (US$65.11 billion), with national defense spending increasing by 2.17 percent, or NT$7.1 billion, compared with fiscal 2018, sources said. However, despite the increase, total defense spending will not reach President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) promised 3 percent of national GDP, they said. Tsai expects a gradual increase in national defense spending that is not lower than an average of the past three years’ total defense spending, Chu said. The Executive Yuan expects to pass the budget for fiscal 2019 before the middle of next month, before the Legislative Yuan’s September session begins. The Ministry of Finance is to issue a report on the annual income expected for fiscal 2019, as new taxes are to go into effect, the sources said.