Taiwan News: Police Hunt Child Abuse Suspect, Cabinet Mulls China ID Countermeasures

Taiwan News: Police Hunt Child Abuse Suspect, Cabinet Mulls China ID Countermeasures
Credit: Reuters / TPG

What you need to know

Your daily bulletin of Taiwan news, courtesy of ICRT.

The National Immigration Agency has confirmed that an American national accused of sexually assaulting a child in Texas is currently in Taiwan.

Cody Wilson is the owner of a company that makes untraceable 3D-printed guns. He also runs a right-wind crowdfunding website.

Wilson is wanted for allegedly having sex with an underage girl in Austin, and is actively being sought by U.S. and international law enforcement.

Taiwan's Criminal Investigation Bureau said Thursday that the suspect entered Taiwan earlier this month and the immigration agency is now seeking to establish his whereabouts.

However, the head of the International Criminal Affairs Division said his office has not yet received any intelligence from the U.S that would aid in tracking down Wilson.

---------------

The Cabinet is looking into ways to counter China's new smart residence permits for Taiwanese nationals and could take action to control the number of people applying for the ID cards.

Cabinet spokeswoman Kolas Yotaka said the government is taking the issue very seriously and Taiwanese nationals who apply for the permits could be deprived of certain civil rights if and when they return to Taiwan.

However, Yotaka said any measures to tackle the issue are still in the planning stages and the government will seek public opinion on the matter before anything is finalized.

The government has previously said the new permits are part of Beijing's policies aimed at undermining Taiwan's sovereignty and warned that applicant's personal privacy is at risk.

The consultation comes following calls from the Democratic Progressive Party and the New Power Party to revoke the ROC citizenships of holders of the Chinese residence permit.

Being says the cards merely offer nationals of Taiwan, as well as Macau and Hong Kong, improved access to social and public services.

---------------------

Deputy Foreign Minister Kelly Hsieh (謝武樵) has said a pending agreement between the Vatican and China will not affect the Holy See's formal ties with Taiwan.

According to Hsieh, Vatican officials have assured the government that the agreement only covers Catholic religious affairs in China and will not touch on political or diplomatic issues.

Reports have said that a deal will end a dispute over the appointment of bishops in China.

Hsieh said that even if that single issue is resolved, there are hundreds of other Catholic religious issues in China concerning religious freedom that also need to be addressed by both sides.

Talks between the Vatican and Beijing regarding the appointment of bishops began in the 1990s, but moved forward rapidly after Pope Francis assumed the papacy in March 2013.

RTS224Y2
Credit: Reuters / TPG
Pope Francis meets members of the 'World Conference on Xenophobia, Racism, and Populist Nationalism in the context of Global Migration,' during a private audience at the Vatican, Sept. 20, 2018.

-----------------------

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said she stands behind her policies aimed at phasing out the use of nuclear power and believes Taiwan is on the path to achieving that goal by 2025.

The reassurance comes as the Central Election Commission considers whether to allow referendums on whether the government should persist with its anti-nuclear policy, and scrap the mothballed fourth nuclear power plant.

Speaking to visiting UK trade envoy to Taiwan, Richard Faulker, Tsai said her government is poised to develop renewable resources and hopes to learn from Britain's successful energy and electricity transformation.

The Presidential Office Tsai also touted the UK for a leadership role in the development of offshore wind energy and called for more cooperation with Britain to develop renewable resources and increase exchanges in green energy.

Tsai has said all of the island's nuclear power plants will be decommissioned as by 2025, when renewable offshore wind and photovoltaic energy is expected to account for 20 percent of the island's overall power generation.

-------------------

The Mainland Affairs Council said it is concerned about the growing number of Taiwanese students opting to study in China.

According to Deputy Minister Chen Ming-chi (陳明祺), the government is now taking steps to inform students of the downsides of such a move.

Chen said there has been an upswing in the number of Taiwanese opting to study in China since Beijing revised regulations allowing students with lower academic standards to enroll in its universities.

The minister said the government has no official figures yet on the trend and doesn't know whether China will continue the new offer beyond its first year.

--------------------

The Ministry of Health is looking to loosen regulations overseeing applications for respite care services when regular foreign caregivers take time off.

The ministry said some 28,000 households could benefit from the move. The new regulations could be adopted as soon as November and will allow households to apply for a maximum of 21 days of respite care annually without having to go through a 30-day waiting period without care.

However, the provision will initially only focus on applicants who are severely disabled with limited support, such as individuals who live alone or are aged over 75.

The proposal still needs to undergo administrative review.

--------------------

RTS2234S
Credit: Reuters / TPG
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (2nd L), who is also the ruling Liberal Democratic Party leader (LDP), votes for the ruling party leadership election at the party's headquarters in Tokyo on Sept. 20, 2018.

President Tsai has congratulated Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on his re-election as head of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party of Japan.

DPP spokesman Cheng Yun-peng (鄭運鵬) said Tsai is expressing her hope that relations between the two countries will now continue to flourish well into the future.

Abe won a landslide vote against his sole challenger in Thursday's election to secure a third term in office as party president, paving the way for him to potentially stay on as prime minister through 2021.

------------------------

President Tsai has warned that China is stepping up its campaign to flood Taiwan with fake news as part of its united front strategy to undermine the societal fabric of Taiwan.

Tsai is urging all democratic countries to counter the effects of such political maneuvering.

The Presidential Office said Tsai believes China's continued spreading of fake news is aimed at influencing global opinion and the international community, particularly democratic countries, should be on high alert and work together to counter potential negative effects.

Tsai made the remarks during a meeting with a delegation from the U.S. international affairs think tank the Atlantic Council, led by Philip Breedlove, a retired four-star General in the United States Air Force.

------------------

The KMT's New Taipei City mayoral candidate, Hou You-yi (侯友宜) is coming under fire for using fake material in a campaign film that opposes the re-opening of the Shenao power plant.

Taipower, the state electricity generator, said it has lodged a formal protest with Hou's campaign team against the film, which includes footage of thick black smoke billowing from random power plants.

Taipower said none of the footage is representative of its power plants.

Hou's campaign team allegedly used stock footage showing smokestacks in other countries billowing smoke.

DPP New Taipei mayoral candidate Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said Hou is using fake material for the campaign film in an attempt to trick voters and he is calling on the KMT candidate to apologize.

Hou said the film explains the dangers of coal-fire power plants.

However, he has yet to explain why his campaign team opted to use footage of at least one heavy polluting Russian power plant in the advert.

---------------------

The National Policy Agency has signed an agreement with the Nauru Police Force to jointly combat cross-border crime.

The agreement was signed by agency Director-General Chen Ja-chin (陳家欽) and his Nauru counterpart in Taipei on the sidelines of the 2018 International Forum on Police Cooperation.

Chen said the deal means the two countries will step up two-way exchanges on intelligence, enhancement of professional skills and technical assistance.

And according to Chen, the agreement is an effort to more effectively fight increasingly diverse cross-border criminal activities.

Taiwan has signed similar agreements with several other diplomatic allies since 2016.

------------------------

Read Next: OPINION: In Kaohsiung, There Are Limits to the Multilingual Love

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

Editor: David Green (@DavidPeterGreen)

If you enjoyed this article and want to receive more like it in your news feed, please be sure to like our Facebook page below.