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Dalai Lama moves thousands at ceremony

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Exiled Tibetan leader the Dalai Lama shares his thoughts at a ceremony to comfort victims of Typhoon Morakot in Kaohsiung yesterday.
PHOTO: PATRICK LIN, AFP

More than 17,000 people from across the country packed the Kaohsiung Arena yesterday morning as the Dalai Lama held a two-hour prayer ceremony for the victims of Typhoon Morakot.

Although the ceremony officially started at 9:30am, many people began lining up on Monday night and by 9am the stadium was packed.

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Former first lady gets one year in jail

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The Taipei District Court yesterday handed down prison sentences ranging from six months to one-and-a-half years to members of former president Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) family and former Taipei Financial Center Corp (台北金融大樓公司) chairwoman Diana Chen (陳敏薰) for perjury.

The former president’s son, Chen Chih-chung (陳致中), daughter Chen Hsing-yu (陳幸妤) and son-in-law Chao Chien-ming (趙建銘) each received six-month prison sentences, which were half the length of one year initially sought.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 02 September 2009 07:23 ) Read more...
 

Dalai Lama tours areas hit hard by Typhoon Morakot

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People wearing T-shirts with a picture of the Dalai Lama on the back wait for the arrival of the Tibetan spiritual leader at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport on Sunday evening.
PHOTO: CHU PEI-HSIUNG, TAIPEI TIMES

The Dalai Lama visited Siaolin Village (小林) in Jiasian Township (甲仙), Kaohsiung County, yesterday on the first full day of his five-day trip, where he hugged survivors of Typhoon Morakot and prayed for its victims.

“Mom, Dad, the Dalai Lama has come to pray for you, please come up quickly,” Chen Lan-yin (陳蘭因), a Siaolin survivor, said while the Dalai Lama held a ritual to bring peace to the departed at the site where the village once stood.

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Committee rejects request for referendum on ECFA

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The Executive Yuan's Referendum Review Committee yesterday turned down a petition submitted by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) asking for a referendum on the economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA) that the government plans to sign with China.

The committee turned down the petition at the end of a three-and-half-hour meeting after 13 members voted against the petition, while four voted in favor and two abstained.

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Dalai Lama invited to comfort victims

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The Dalai Lama has accepted an invitation to visit the victims of Typhoon Morakot in southern Taiwan at the end of this month, a Kaohsiung City Government official said yesterday.

Asked about the visit, the Presidential Office told the Taipei Times it had “no comment.”

The Tibetan spiritual leader had expressed his desire to visit Taiwan last November, but President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said then that “the timing isn't appropriate.”

Last Updated ( Thursday, 27 August 2009 07:06 ) Read more...
 

Ma cool on starting security measures

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The Presidential Office said yesterday that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) has decided for the moment not to activate the national security mechanism in response to the growing threat of an (A)H1N1, or swine flu, epidemic.

The announcement came after calls from the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) for the president to call a national security meeting in response to the growing threat of a nationwide outbreak.

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MORAKOT: THE AFTERMATH: Swine flu hindering disaster relief work

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Deity figures covered with mud are pictured in Linbian Township, Pingtung County, yesterday.
PHOTO: CNA

Disaster relief work in the aftermath of Typhoon Morakot is being complicated by the emerging threat of a swine flu epidemic, as an increasing number of flu patients are diagnosed and reported nationwide, including several aid workers.

The Ministry of National Defense said in a press release yesterday that 10 soldiers working in the Pingtung area had been diagnosed with swine flu.

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Newsflash

US Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, chairman of the US House of Representatives’ Foreign Affairs Committee, told a special hearing on Taiwan that she would soon introduce new legislation “to enhance the Taiwan Relations Act [TRA].”

While she gave no details, her intent is to boost US-Taiwanese relations and dramatically improve communications between Washington and Taipei.

She said Taiwan inspired all victims of Beijing’s oppression and struck fear into the hearts of “the cynical old men who still rule Beijing.”