By Jason Pan / Staff reporterHsinchu City police yesterday questioned a man over the alleged killing of a woman, whose body was recovered from a mountain road in Taoyuan. Hsinchu prosecutors and police officers on Tuesday found the 34-year-old man, surnamed Lin (林), in Yunlin County, after the woman’s teenage daughter reported her missing. Lin was having an affair with the 45-year-old woman, who was living with her daughter in Hsinchu City, prosecutors said. Lin drove off in his car the next morning and returned at about noon, but there was no sign of the woman, the footage showed. They started to quarrel and Lin allegedly strangled her in a fit of anger until she stopped breathing, police said.
AFP, COPENHAGENA former employee of Denmark’s social services on Tuesday was sentenced to six–and-a-half years in prison for embezzling millions in funds, meant for people in need, over decades. Britta Nielsen, 65, was accused of diverting 117 million Danish kroner (US$16.9 million at the current exchange rate) between 1993 and 2018 from the social services to her personal bank accounts by creating fictitious projects. Prosecutors had requested at least eight years in prison, claiming that she had abused her position as a public servant. Nielsen, who was employed by the social services agency for 40 years, admitted to the fraud, but not the amount of money suggested by the prosecution. The trial has had to be adjourned several times due to Nielsen collapsing in court and being too ill to stand trial.
DBS Bank last year approved syndicated loans of US$764 million, Luo said. The outbreak is expected to have a mild impact on Taiwan’s economy, compared with China’s, Luo said. The bank plans to provide loans to more than 10 green energy projects of this year, he said. DBS would provide assistance to borrowers that have solid business performance, but have seen cash flow drop due to the outbreak, Luo said. “So far, our Taiwanese corporate clients with operations in China are dealing with the situation well.
The Diamond Princess cruise ship is also the only place where health officials have seen the disease spread easily among people beyond China. In a possible sign of lax protocols, three Japanese health officials who helped conduct the quarantine checks on the ship were also infected. Ryan said cruise ships in particular were known to occasionally accelerate spread. “Obviously the quarantine hasn’t worked, and this ship has now become a source of infection,” said Nathalie MacDermott, an outbreak expert at King’s College London. “There’s no reason this [quarantine] should not have worked if it had been done properly,” she said.
AFP, LONDONMore than 100 doctors on Monday called on Britain to end Julian Assange’s “torture” in prison pending his extradition to the US on espionage charges. Washington’s extradition request is to start being heard on Monday next week at Woolwich Crown Court. A group of 117 physicians and psychologists from 18 nations wrote in a letter to The Lancet medical journal that Assange was being subjected to “torture” in prison. “Since doctors first began assessing Mr Assange in the Ecuadorian [sic] Embassy in 2015, expert medical opinion and doctors’ urgent recommendations have been consistently ignored,” they wrote. Assange was briefly transferred from prison to a medical facility last year because of his frail health.
The idea of “associate citizenship” was first raised in late 2016 by Verhofstadt, who was then the European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator. The offer would be of continued freedom of movement and residence around the bloc for those who wished to retain such rights. Such a status would also protect rights in healthcare, welfare and workplace conditions, and likely the right to vote in European Parliament elections. The chances of such an initiative making headway in the negotiations are extremely limited, as it would be unlawful under EU legislation. “There would be support from millions of Londoners and British nationals who are devastated they are losing their rights as EU citizens,” he added.
While the nation’s low birthrate is a major factor in the overall drop in high-schoolers, the drop in vocational students accounted for 75.3 percent of the total decrease, the report showed, despite vocational schools being tuition-free since 2014. Deep-rooted cultural norms dictate that “successful” students go on to regular high schools, while those with bad academic results end up at vocational schools, regardless of the student’s interests. Union of Private School Educators president Yu Jung-hui (尤榮輝) has said that overemphasis by families on academic success has played a role in the drop in enrollment at vocational high schools, but private vocational schools have also been affected by scandals and poor management. However, the measure does not solve any problems as vocational schools still need to prioritize survival over meeting industry demand. Even more alarmingly, Yu adds that the quality of faculty and occupational training at vocational universities, mostly attended by graduates of vocational high schools, are “not as industry-related” as those at regular universities.
By Nigel Li 李澤霖On Feb. 7, Singapore’s government raised the city-state’s Disease Outbreak Response System Condition (DORSCON) level from “yellow” to “orange.”As COVID-19 spreads through the Singaporean populace, the government has heightened measures according to the raised DORSCON level. However, when the alert level was first raised, Singaporeans responded by flocking to the supermarkets, emptying the shelves of toilet paper, rice, canned foods and other staples. The Singaporeans’ response highlights some ways that people think that are concerning. When the virus was only beginning to raise alarm bells, the government announced that it would distribute masks to households (four per family). Interestingly, when a DBS bank employee was discovered to have contracted the virus, the whole floor of the office building was evacuated.
Women like her are ostracized in many rural villages in Bangladesh, where they are viewed as the cause of their partner’s misfortune. Already grieving the loss of their partner, overnight they become “tiger widows” — pariahs in their homes and villages at a time when they most need support. “It would mar my family’s well-being and could bring bad luck,” the 31-year-old honey hunter said. However, Ledars Bangladesh head Mohon Kumar Mondal said that the mistreatment of “tiger widows” was widespread in highly conservative communities, which often held “centuries-old” prejudices. “We had to do it [help Khatun] confidentially or else the village society would have ostracized us as well,” he said.
By Wu Po-hsuan / Staff reporterA memorial square is to be built on National Taiwan University’s (NTU) campus in honor of democracy advocate Chen Wen-chen (陳文成), the NTU Student Association said yesterday. Chen, an NTU graduate and assistant professor at Carnegie Mellon University, was found dead on the campus on July 3, 1981, a day after being questioned by the Taiwan Garrison Command. In 2011, the Dr Chen Wen-chen Memorial Foundation wrote to NTU about raising a monument in his honor, but received no response, the association said, adding that a student proposal sent to the Gallery of NTU History in 2012 also went unanswered. Following the passage of proposals for the name of the memorial square and a monument at university affairs meetings in 2014 and 2015, a call for designs was made in 2016, but funding became an issue the following year, it said. Nevertheless, the foundation has raised the NT$12 million (US$398,340) needed for the memorial square, the association said, adding that a donation agreement was signed with NTU on Monday.
By Kao Shih-ching / Staff reporterThe Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) yesterday fined Cathay Life Insurance Co (國泰人壽) a total of NT$5.6 million (US$185,892), the most severe penalty levied against the insurance unit of Cathay Financial Holding Co (國泰金控) in the past three years. An examination conducted in late 2018 found that some of the insurer’s salespeople improperly encouraged their clients to cancel old insurance policies to buy new products, to apply with Cathay Life for mortgages to buy policies or to borrow money against their policies, the commission said. Some salespeople admitted to misleading clients after the examination, FSC Insurance Bureau Chief Secretary Lin Yao-tung (林耀東) told a news conference in New Taipei City. The insurer’s unit in China’s Liaoning Province was in March 2017 barred by Chinese regulators from selling new accident insurance policies for six months as punishment for not precisely recording the information of clients, Lin said. Cathay Life said that it would enhance its supervision of salespeople, its internal control system and its underwriting process in accordance with regulations.
By Chang Jui-chen, Chang Ching-ya and William Hetherington / Staff reporters, with staff writerThe Taichung City Police Department is recalling thousands of traffic safety posters after a city resident noticed that they depict what appeared to be a Chinese police officer. The department six months ago commissioned a designer to create the posters, but did not notice the error until it was pointed out by the resident earlier this month, it said. The department is recalling the posters due to the controversy, but they do not contain any Chinese flags or other references to China, department traffic division Deputy Captain Lin Cheng-che (林鉦哲) said. Separately on Sunday, the Kaohsiung Police Department reprimanded the officers responsible for allowing a traffic safety pamphlet containing the Chinese flag to be released to the public. The department in August last year contracted the designer to create 18,000 pamphlets for NT$0.3 per piece, it said.
“We are experiencing a slower return to normal conditions than we had anticipated,” Apple said in a statement. “As a result, we do not expect to meet the revenue guidance we provided for the March quarter.”Apple had forecast revenue of US$63 billion to US$67 billion for the second quarter to next month. It said that worldwide iPhone supply would be “temporarily constrained” as its manufacturing partners in China were only slowly ramping up work after being closed due to the virus. Consumer demand in the Chinese market has also been dampened after all Apple stores were shut. Mirabaud Securities Ltd global thematic group cohead Neil Campling said that Apple’s warning threatens to open the “floodgates,” as the virus affects supply chains around the world.
Reuters, BEIJINGChina is to grant exemptions on retaliatory duties imposed against 696 US goods, the most substantial tariff relief to be offered so far, as Beijing seeks to fulfill commitments made in its interim trade deal with the US. Yesterday’s announcement came after the “phase one” trade deal between the two countries took effect on Friday last week and is the third round of tariff exemptions China has offered. US goods eligible for tariff exemptions include key agricultural and energy products such as pork, beef, soybeans, liquefied natural gas and crude oil, which were subject to extra tariffs imposed during the trade dispute. Beijing’s announcement emphasized that Chinese firms would submit applications for tariff exemptions based on market conditions and commercial considerations. Firms can start submitting their applications on March 2, and any exemptions granted would be valid for one year.
By Natasha Li / Staff reporterHon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密) yesterday confirmed rumors it plans to produce masks in Taiwan amid the expanding COVID-19 outbreak. The world’s largest electronics contract manufacturer said it has contacted suppliers of raw materials and machinery equipment to produce masks for its home market. Mass production is scheduled to begin next month with an estimated daily output of 1 million units, Hon Hai said. The Longhua Park plant is expected to produce 2 million masks per day by the end of the month, the company said. Total production is expected to amount to 10 million masks on a daily basis by the end of next month, the ministry said.