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Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

Tsai, DPP need to raise their game

Time and tide wait for no man, and for no political party in Taiwan. The first year of President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) time in office has come and gone, and things are not bad, but they are not good either.

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) also has its problems. It has just chosen former vice president Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) to be its chairman for the next four years. Given the options, Wu was no doubt the best choice. However, that does not necessarily bode well for the KMT. What does all this mean? It is time to take stock.


NGO takes credit for Lee Ching-yu trip

Lee Ching-yu, wife of human rights advocate Lee Ming-che, attends a news conference in Taipei on Tuesday after her visit to the US to seek help in freeing her husband, who is detained in China.
Photo: Huang Yao-cheng, Taipei Times

Lee Ching-yu’s (李凈瑜) trip to the US last week to seek help in freeing her husband, human rights advocate Lee Ming-che (李明哲), was arranged by US non-governmental organization (NGO) China Aid, a statement released yesterday by a task force involved with the rescue efforts said.


Decisions on medical paroles not for jailors

On Friday last week, former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁), who served six years of a 20-year jail sentence for corruption, but is now on medical parole, attended a fundraising dinner.

At the event, he violated a ban on five kinds of activity that Taichung Prison imposed as conditions of his parole, and so is now at risk of having his parole revoked. This puts into question whether it should be correctional institutions that make the decisions about when to grant medical parole and when to revoke it.


Same-sex Marriage: Marriage restrictions ‘unconstitutional’

Judicial Yuan Secretary-General Lu Tai-lang yesterday issues Constitutional Interpretation No. 748 on the legality of same-sex marriage during a news conference in Taipei.
Photo: CNA

The Council of Grand Justices yesterday ruled that the Civil Code, which says an agreement to marry can only be made between a man and a woman, “violated” constitutional guarantees of freedom of marriage and equality.


Title change is a shift in relationship with Japan

That the former Association of East Asian Relations has been renamed the Taiwan-Japan Relations Association indicates a subtle, yet important change in the relationship between the two nations.

The juxtaposition of Taiwan next to Japan in the organization’s official name suggests that Taiwan is now finally being treated as an equal by Japan. Taiwanese welcomed the change, as it is a gesture of Japanese goodwill.


China trying to divide the nation

Taiwanese human rights advocate Lee Ming-che (李明哲) has now been missing for more than two months. People know nothing about his physical and mental health except for what China’s Taiwan Affairs Office has said. By detaining Lee, the Chinese government has deprived him of his basic human rights.

When he was first detained, Beijing sent a letter to Lee’s wife, Lee Ching-yu (李凈瑜), via a man named Lee Chun-min (李俊敏), which is odd.

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Two senior members of US President Barack Obama’s administration spelled out aspects of White House policy toward Taiwan on Friday and made it very clear that despite Chinese objections arms sales would continue.

Jeffrey Bader, senior director for East Asian Affairs in the National Security Council, and US Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg were speaking at separate briefings on Obama’s eight-day Asian trip, which starts this week and includes talks with Chinese President Hu Jintao (胡錦濤).