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Oct 7, 2008


Beijing has SARS virus in its arsenal: NSB chief

National Security Bureau (NSB) Director Tsai Chao-ming (蔡朝明) said yesterday that the SARS virus has become part of China’s biochemical warfare program.

“We have information indicating that the SARS virus has become a biochemical warfare formula, and United Nations experts have the same intelligence as that obtained by the NSB,” he told the legislature’s Foreign and National Defense Committee....

Late last night the bureau issued a statement denying that Tsai had said Beijing turned the SARS virus into a weapon. The bureau said Tsai had been misunderstood.

How weird is that? I listened to the recording. There was no misunderstanding.

MOI working on limited absentee voting proposal
Deputy Minister of the Interior Chien Tai-lang (簡太郎) said the ministry plans to push for absentee voting next year to better protect the right to vote.

“We are working on amendments to electoral laws to allow absentee voting so that the right to vote of those who cannot make it back to their home electoral districts would not be compromised,” Chien said in response to a question from Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Wu Yu-sheng (吳育昇) about the ministry’s plans during a meeting of the Internal Administration Committee.

Chien said the ministry would probably finish its draft proposal and submit it to Cabinet and the legislative next year.
Taiwan, China agree terms of direct flights: official
Minister of Transportation and Communications Mao Chi-kuo (毛治國) said yesterday that Taiwan and China share a common view on adopting direct routes for existing nonstop cross-strait weekend chartered flights.

Speaking at the legislature, Mao said proposals on the adoption of the shortest possible routes for direct cross-strait weekend chartered flights have almost been drafted by the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) and China’s Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS).

“Once the new rounds of SEF-ARATS talks take place and details on the matter are worked out, agreements on the opening of direct weekend chartered flights via direct routes could be signed by the two sides,” Mao said.
No date yet for ARATS chief’s visit: MAC
The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) continued to be evasive on exactly when Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS) Chairman Chen Yunlin (陳雲林) would visit Taiwan, but confirmed the trip would take place before the end of the year in spite of recent protests over contaminated milk powder from China.

“We have not decided on an exact date but the general direction has been set,” council spokesman Liu Teh-hsun (劉德勳) said.

“We are aiming for the end of October or beginning of November,” Liu said.
Ease job laws for Chinese spouses: CLA
Council of Labor Affairs Minister Wang Ju-hsuan (王如玄) said yesterday that regulations governing the working rights of Chinese spouses of Taiwanese should be relaxed if the country is to treat this group fairly.

Wang said that since Chinese spouses are “daughters-in-law of Taiwanese elders” and mothers of Taiwanese children, they should be granted the same rights as people from other countries who are married to Taiwanese.

This means that Chinese spouses should be able to obtain work permits immediately after they are granted resident status, Wang said.


Haitien said...

RE: Absentee voting

While allowing people away from home to vote is a good thing, I wonder how they plan to address the issue of possible coercion and privacy issues in an absentee voting system. At this point, wouldn't it be easier to simply allow domestic voters residing away from home to vote at the polling place they are nearest to?

阿牛 said...

Using a mission/embassy would work well, and that's the European model.