Taiwan News: Govt Condemns China's 85C Cafe Pressure, President Tsai in Paraguay

Taiwan News: Govt Condemns China's 85C Cafe Pressure, President Tsai in Paraguay
Photo Credit: Tsai Ing-wen Facebook
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The Presidential Office is accusing of China was imposing its ideology on the international community and infringing on free speech, after netizens there attacked the 85C Bakery Café chain.

Presidential Office spokesman Alex Huang (黃重諺) said the actions by Chinese online commentators aimed at hindering the world market order and freedom of speech are "uncivilized."

The statements come after Chinese posters flooded the company's Weibo sites to accuse it of being a pro-Taiwan independence following a visit Aug. 14 by President Tsai Ying-wen (蔡英文) to one of its Los Angeles branches, during which she signed a pillow and posed for pictures.

The cafe has now closed its Weibo site and issued a statement expressing support for the "1992 consensus" after an editorial in China's state-run Global Times newspaper urged it to do so or risk a boycott of its outlets in China.

According to its annual 2017 report, 64 percent of 85C's sales were generated in China, with Taiwan and the U.S. accounting for 17 percent each.

The Weibo statement also said the company will continue to promote the peaceful development of cross-Strait ties. However, those sentiments have not placated irate Taiwanese consumers, who have proposed a boycott in Taiwan as a result of the company's submission to Chinese pressure.

Cabinet spokesperson Kolas Yutaka said the government has extend its sympathy to the bakery cafe chain and strongly condemns the suppression of the free market and international enterprises, based on political ideology.

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President Tsai on Wednesday attended the inauguration of Paraguayan President-elect Mario Abdo Bernitez and extended her congratulations to the new head of state.

Tsai was seated on a viewing stand, along with her counterparts from Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Colombia, Bolivia and Guatemala, during the ceremony.

Tsai spoke briefly with Uruguay's President Tabare Vazquez, who was sitting next to her, before the ceremony.

And she was also warmly welcomed by Abdo Bernitez when he went on stage to take the oath of office.

Tsai is scheduled to fly to Belize Thursday for a three-day visit.

She will return to Taiwan on Monday evening following a 27-hour stop over in the U.S. city of Houston.

It is Tsai's fifth overseas trip since she took office in May 2016.

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Photo Credit: Reuters / TPG
Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen (L) and Brasil's President Michel Temer chat as Paraguay's new President Mario Abdo Benitez (not pictured) participates in the 'Te Deum' at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Asuncion, Paraguay Aug. 15, 2018.

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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it is still pushing Japan on the "comfort women" issue and is continuing to engage in talks on the matter with Japanese officials.

The statement comes after a bronze statue symbolizing the women who were forced to work in brothels for the Japanese military during World War II was unveiled in Tainan earlier this week.

The statue, which was erected by a local NGO and the Kuomintang party and had nothing to do with the central government, is the first of its kind in Taiwan.

Former President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) attended the unveiling ceremony and called on Japan to apologize and compensate the "comfort women." He also accused the Democratic Progressive Party of being too soft on the issue.

Some 58 women in Taiwan have been recognized as "comfort women" forced to work in Japan's wartime military brothels, of whom only two remain alive.

Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga has described the unveiling of the statue as being "extremely regrettable" and has asked the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association to express its concern to the government in Taipei.

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Photo Credit: CNA
The statue commemorating the suffering of 'comfort women' during the Japanese occupation of Taiwan in Tainan.

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The Central Weather Bureau has said a new tropical storm that has formed in waters near Okinawa is not expected to directly affect Taiwan, but could bring sporadic showers to the northeast.

Tropical Storm Rumbia is the 18th storm of this year's Pacific typhoon season.

Forecasters say the storm is expected to make landfall in China early tomorrow.

Rumbia is moving in a west-northwesterly direction at 12 km per hour and is packing sustained wind speeds of 64 km per hour, with gusts of up to 90 km per hour.

According to the weather bureau, although the storm will pass over waters well north of Taiwan as it heads toward China, parts of northeastern Taiwan are likely to be affected by the periphery today and tomorrow.

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Photo Credit: Reuters / TPG
An Airbus A380 jet lands at Taipei airport for the first time June 8, 2007.

The Taoyuan International Airport Corporation will inaugurate a new taxiway today, which it says will make the airport's operations more efficient.

The new 740-meter taxiway W2 runs north-south and connects the airport's two major runways.

The company said it will help improve the flow of traffic.

According to the airport operator, the opening of the new taxiway means it will be better able to handle the Airbus A-380, because other taxiways have been unable to cope with the world's largest commercial aircraft.

The taxiway project is part of extensive work being carried out at the airport in preparation for the construction of a third terminal.

Taiwan's Minister of Transportation and Communications Ho Chen Tan (賀陳旦) announced in April that completion of the third terminal project, which includes the construction of an additional taxiway and the relocation of another, will be delayed until 2022 as a result of delays in the design process.

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Construction work on an extension line for the Kaohsiung Metro connecting Gangshan South and Gangshan stations could begin before the end of this year.

The city's Mass Rapid Transit Bureau said submissions from two bidders for the 1.4-km section at the north end of the metro's red line will be reviewed by the end of August.

According to bureau's deputy head, the extension line will cost an estimated NT$1.8 billion (US$58 million) and take two years for the first phase to be completed.

The second phase will involve the installation of power supplies and mechanical systems, as well as a further extension into the city's Luzhu and Hunei districts.

The red line is currently 28-km long has 24 stations and runs from Xiaogang to Gangshan South.

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Taiwan's Asian Games team has arrived in Indonesia ahead of Saturday's opening ceremony at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium.

Some 300 athletes and support staff took a chartered flight to Jakarta.

Sports Administration Director-General Kao Chin-hsung (高俊雄) said he hopes the team will bring home a lot of medals.

Taiwan is seen as having the potential to win gold medals in tennis, badminton, weightlifting, taekwondo, and swimming.

Olympic weightlifter Kuo Hsing-chun (郭婞淳) will carry Taiwan's flag during the opening ceremony of this year's games.

And it'll be the first time a female athlete will have carry the Taiwan team flag at the Asian Games since 1998 in Bangkok.

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Taiwan's highest museum has opened in the Alishan National Forest Recreation Area in Chiayi County.

The county government says the 1,400-hectare recreation area is located 2,200 meters above sea level.

The "1913 Antique Office of Alishan House- Local Cultural Building" is a part of Alishan House, a historic hotel that has hosted numerous foreign leaders.

And officials said the museum is designed to act as a platform to showcase Alishan's history, culture, education and arts.

The structure was originally built in 1913 and was a group of three buildings that housed Japanese military officers and Taiwanese workers.


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This news bulletin was provided courtesy of International Community Radio Taipei (ICRT), Taiwan’s leading English-language broadcaster.

Editor David Green (@DavidPeterGreen)

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