• Home

頭條新聞 Headline News

China says it will normalize military drills east of the median line of the Taiwan Strait

The military says it has gleaned valuable information from China’s most recent drills near Taiwan, which will inform future defense plans. The military also resolutely rejected Chinese claims that there is no median line in the Taiwan Strait. That’s in contrast to Chinese state media, which has said that drills east of the median line will likely be normalized. Taiwan’s military says it is actively training for all contingencies and is ready to respond.

Equipped with AIM-120 and AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missiles, F-16V fighter jets join Di Hua frigates off the east coast. The contingent is closely monitoring Chinese PLA vessels conducting drills near Taiwan’s waters. On Tuesday, the Army has scheduled anti-landing exercises at Pingtung County’s Checheng Township.

China has just concluded drills near Taiwan’s waters, and Taiwan’s military is practicing to counter any future contingencies. China is already planning more drills to take place from August 8 to Sept. 8 in the Bohai Sea next to North Korea, and is currently holding drills in the southern part of the Yellow Sea next to South Korea until Aug. 16. China state media says the PLA may normalize drills east of the median line of the Taiwan Strait.

China Central Television news broadcast
As you can see from these six demarcated areas, there is no so-called median line in the Taiwan Strait. Experts say there is a chance that the PLA Navy will normalize exercises east of the so-called median line.

Shen Shih-wei
Ministry of National Defense
The median line has been there for the past half-century, since the 1950s. It’s a tacit line between the two sides of the strait. Although it isn’t recognized by any international laws, it is a fact that the line exists. These six exclusion zones that China announced for these most recent drills all fall to the east of that median line. This shrinking of our space for our own drills, and the impact on international flights, is quite significant.

Asked why it didn’t warn the public when China launched a Dongfeng ballistic missile over Taiwan’s airspace, the military said it had determined there was no need after it understood the missile’s trajectory and prepared intercept measures.

Following the missile launch China took the opportunity to spread propaganda about the exercises. It said it had made 10 breakthroughs including “approaching Taiwan’s coast, overlooking Taiwan’s coastline and mountain range, firing a conventional missile over Taiwan, destroying the fantasy of a median line in the Taiwan Strait, and setting up a shooting range on the east side of Taiwan.” However, in the process of firing the missile, China also gave Taiwan valuable strategic deployment and intelligence information.

Yan Yu-hsien
Ministry of National Defense
These 10 breakthroughs that China describes are very enlightening for our military. The locations and scenarios of China’s exercises will definitely be included in our own future defense exercises.

Chen Yu-lin
Ministry of National Defense
China’s cognitive warfare campaign against us was already evident before these exercises. In terms of the content of that propaganda, it can be divided into three categories: creating hype around China’s plans for a military invasion of Taiwan, attacking the character of the government, and destroying public and military morale.

Taiwan’s military acted professionally and in accordance with international standards in response to China’s most recent drills. The worldwide community now has a clear understanding of China as the aggressor in the Taiwan Strait.


最新消息 Latest News

COA offers NT$200 vouchers to people who buy NT$600 worth of China-banned products

The Council of Agriculture has announced a NT$60 million voucher program to promote consumption of goods slapped with an import ban in China. Members of the public are eligible to win a NT$200 voucher after spending at least NT$600 on any of six affected products, such as pomelos and groupers. A total of 300,000 vouchers will be handed out at a raffle on Oct. 5.

There’s just a few weeks until the Mid-Autumn Festival and its family cookouts. This year, the Council of Agriculture wants pomelos and groupers to be the star of the show, as these products are among thousands that been banned for import in China. The council has launched a new voucher program. Shoppers who buy NT$600 of pomelo, grouper, beltfish, Japanese horse mackerel, fourfinger threadfin or tilapia can enter a raffle for agricultural vouchers worth NT$200.

Chen Chi-chung
Council of Agriculture
We can launch it in time for the Mid-Autumn Festival, which is just around the corner. We encourage consumers to use these vouchers to purchase high-quality Taiwanese agricultural and fisheries products. More importantly, consumer action can allow for these excellent pomelos and fish to be consumed domestically.

The voucher program has a budget of NT$60 million. The raffle will be held on Oct. 5, with 300,000 vouchers on offer. They can be spent at more than 3,500 shops around Taiwan. The COA hopes that the program can boost sales and keep agricultural prices from plummeting.

Chen Chi-chung
Council of Agriculture
The vouchers are just one of the policies to stimulate domestic sales. We think that, thanks to the Mid-Autumn Festival, consumers will purchase pomelos, and the five kinds of fish we mentioned. That should make farm prices even better than before, offsetting the impact from the fact that they can’t be exported to China.

The COA minister said that public satisfaction with last year’s agricultural vouchers stood at 97%. The program had increased consumers by 60% and attracted more than 5 million people to travel to farming and fishing villages. The council hopes the new program will have a similar effect, to support local farmers and fishers.


Saint Vincent and the Grenadines prime minister visits for 12th time

President Tsai Ing-wen on Monday received the prime minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines at the Presidential Office. PM Ralph Gonsalves was greeted with a military salute ceremony, and referred to by Tsai as a close friend of Taiwan. In his address, Gonsalves criticized China’s recent actions, and praised Tsai as the leader of an exceptional country.

A 19-gun salute greets President Tsai Ing-wen and Ralph Gonsalves, the prime minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.

The two leaders walk on the red carpet and inspect the troops. It’s not the first time that Gonsalves visits Taiwan. But his presence in Taiwan amid China’s recent escalation of tensions in the Taiwan Strait is especially significant.

Tsai Ing-wen
Prime Minister Gonsalves is a close and dear friend of Taiwan. This is his 12th visit to Taiwan and his 11th in his capacity as prime minister, clearly demonstrating the importance that he attaches to diplomatic relations between our countries. In particular, Prime Minister Gonsalves has expressed in recent days that the Chinese military drills would not prevent him from visiting friends in Taiwan. These statements have deeply touched us.

Ralph Gonsalves
Prime minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
I give thanks for the strength of this remarkable woman, the president of this exceptional country.

Gonsalves’ visit to Taiwan coincided with Father’s Day in Taiwan, Aug. 8. Earlier in the day, President Tsai had posed on social media, thanking all of the fathers in Taiwan defending the island for their loved ones. Tsai said that many soldiers in the military are also fathers. She said she deeply respected them, for being at their posts working for their country’s defense on this special day. At the Presidential Office, Gonsalves once again voiced support for Taiwan.

Ralph Gonsalves
Prime minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Accordingly as all in our hemisphere, in the western hemisphere. We do not like it and we do not support it when any powerful neighbor seeks to intimidate us and bully us. Wherever there are differences, we must settle them peacefully in a civilized manner.

It is Gonsalves’ 12th visit to Taiwan, and his 11th time as prime minister. It’s his first time visiting Taiwan after getting reelected for a fifth consecutive term in November 2020.


Taipower opens electronic music cafe in former police dormitory

Taipower has found a surprise use for one of its many old buildings. A former special police dorm in Taipei is now an electronic music cafe. The building has retained its 60s charm while gaining a very modern update. Fans of electro can enjoy live DJ sets while sipping their afternoon tea.

This blue-themed room has a neon aesthetic. The neon lights in front of the toilet change color according to the angle they’re pointed at.

This old Taipower building on Taipei’s Chaozhou Road was built to be a police dormitory in 1963. Pushing open the railings of the basement, you can see the old firearms room. After standing disused for 20 years, the building has been thoroughly renovated. These blue lightning emblems, symbolizing Taipower, can be seen on every windowsill. Completing the theme is the giant Taipower manhole cover hanging at the entrance.

Chang Hsiao-yen
Taipower Land Development Dept.
We’ve preserved a lot of the original elements in this old Taipower building, including the floor tiles and the handrails. We hope visitors can enjoy the electronic music, have a sweet treat and experience a different kind of afternoon tea.

These dorayaki have the lightning emblem on the pancake, red adzuki bean paste inside, and two scoops of matcha ice cream on top. The milk tea is in a glass with a lightning pattern on a manhole coaster. The whole atmosphere is irresistible to young people.

Member of public
This place feels like an old building that’s been revamped, but it doesn’t feel too old. Kind of modern and comfortable.

Member of public
The pancakes with the adzuki bean and the matcha ice cream – I haven’t eaten anything like this before. The pancakes are very soft, they taste great.

Taipower’s creative team has really outdone itself. To turn an old police dormitory into a trendy cafe is a new venture for the electricity giant.


Taiwanese artists come under fire from Chinese fans for not toeing CCP line

Amid rising nationalism in China, Taiwanese artists have come under fire on Chinese social media for failing to trumpet Beijing’s rhetoric on Taiwan. Among them, pop star Jolin Tsai has lost more than 300,000 followers on Weibo, with other stars such as Hebe Tien being criticized for making posts eating spaghetti. One city councilor said Chinese bullying will not win hearts and minds, and conversely will sow contempt for China among Taiwanese artists and fans.

Taiwanese singer Jolin Tsai’s hit track “Womxnly,” which touches upon LGBT issues, was recently recommended by China Central Television in a post on a Chinese social media platform. Not even a week later, the post has been removed. Reports say it’s because of Tsai’s failure to publicly endorse China’s Taiwan stance in her own account. Some users on the platform have accused Tsai of being a “Taiwanese separatist.”

CCTV made the post on Thursday last week, praising the song for tackling youth struggles. However, users on Chinese social media platform Weibo later discovered the post had been deleted, and that Tsai lost over 300,000 followers overnight. Chinese users filled Tsai’s page with comments asking for an explanation.

Voice of Nien Chang-yu
Media industry consultant
I feel that many Taiwanese artists, especially the ones who grow to great fame, will tend to stick to their guns. They feel like, “Hey, I haven’t made any public statements on this for so long already, but I’m still well received.” However, my feeling is, if you make a statement one time on something, then the next time you will have to do the same. If not, you’ll end up getting lumped in with a certain category, and you’ll be rejected.

Artist Aaron Yan has also fallen victim to Chinese bullying. He recently posted to Facebook asking whether he should eat Taiwanese or American-style breakfast. Chinese followers who saw the post called for a boycott of the artist. One Taipei City councilor responded saying that Chinese internet users were getting out of control, and would end up pushing Taiwanese further away.

Chen E-jun
DPP Taipei City councilor
They use Taiwanese artists as chips in a contest between nations, we can see it clearly. The Chinese have low self-esteem and no confidence in themselves. In fact, by acting this way they won’t make Taiwanese feel like we’re all part of the same nation. Quite the opposite – more and more people today feel spurned by China.

Taiwanese singer Hebe Tien has also come under fire from Chinese for posting a picture of herself eating spaghetti. As Chinese nationalism reaches new levels, more and more Taiwanese are losing interest engaging with China at all.


Doctors warn of heat injuries in hot summer

It’s a scorching summer! Doctors say that heat injury is something that shouldn’t be overlooked, especially when you’re outdoors. If you experience dryness of the mouth or palpitations, go indoors where it’s well ventilated and rehydrate. To avoid the heat, many Taipei denizens went a step further by going ice skating.

This boy pays close attention to his instructor, trying to pick up the basics of skating. Many have come to this indoor skating rink after having given up on outdoor activities. Wearing their ice skates, visitors can enjoy the thrills of skating or simply relax in the 12-degree temperature.

Member of public
It’s very hot, so I decided that skating would be fun and came with my friends to get away from the heat.

Member of public
It’s hot during summer vacation. My mom wanted to find an activity for me to do, and I ended up taking lessons here.

Skating instructor
A lot of people don’t have anywhere to go during summer vacation, so they came here to cool off and play a little.

Whether it’s entering the rink or picking up skates, it’s one line after another. According to data, from Jan. to June, this facility had an average of 788 visitors a day. The average daily number has already reached 1,487 for July so far, an increase of 88%. Outside in the scorching sun, it’s a different story. In Taoyuan, an Electric-Techno Neon God lost consciousness as he was dancing outside.

People rushed up to check on him to make sure he was alright. Doctors remind the public to watch out for heat injury during summer. A serious case may lead to cardiovascular or brain damage, so don’t try to brave the heat.

Lin Wei-wen
Cardiologist, Taiwan Adventist Hospital
A rapid rise in body temperature will make the body hot, as if your organs are being soaked in hot water, and when your temperature rises rapidly, your organs will be damaged. Now when you’re dehydrated, the blood in blood vessels will get thicker and the viscosity will increase. This can easily lead to blood clots, and the blood clots can cause blockage in your blood vessels, resulting in myocardial infarction.

Doctor Lin reminds that if you have any symptoms of heat injury such as dryness of your mouth or palpitations, you should quickly go to a well ventilated place indoors. Do not gulp down ice water, as the large temperature difference might be harmful to the body. Drink lots of room temperature or cool water instead to effectively relieve the symptoms.


Kaohsiung restaurant serves up classic ba-wan meatballs for decades

For the foodies, Sizihwan in Kaohsiung is a paradise of Taiwanese cuisine. One little eatery that we’re checking out today specializes in the ba-wan. It’s a classic street food snack a bit like a sticky meatball. Restaurant owner Chang Ching-wen inherited the recipe from his dad, and the restaurant has been serving happy diners for more than half a century.

A spoonful of rice flour dough is filled with minced meat and covered. These rich and sticky ba-wans all cook together in a steamer.

Member of public
My husband grew up here and he’s been eating this his whole life. He loves it. It’s a very traditional flavor. We’ve come down from Taipei, so we both love eating here.

Member of public
It smells wonderful, very unusual. Actually this is my first time here, but someone told me it was delicious so we came to try it out.

This is a spot purely for traditional snacks. With more than 50 years in business, it’s a favorite local establishment. One thousand handmade ba-wans are served up every day, alongside other classic dishes like sticky rice cakes, four herb soup, and fish cake soup. Second-generation owner Chang Ching-wen learned the recipes as a young boy.

Chang Ching-wen
Ba-wan shop owner
The kid in this photo – that’s me. Next to me is my dad. He happened to be making ba-wans and I was playing nearby and watching. To make the dough with long-grain, non-glutinous rice, you have to choose old rice, rice that’s about 18 months to two years old. I just copied the way my dad did it back then, and carried on the tradition.

The shop opens at 6 a.m. Apart from the ba-wans, the sticky rice cakes are a very hot item on the menu, adorned as they are with minced meat, fish floss, sliced cucumber, and braised eggs.

Lin Li-chun
Ba-wan shop owner
Because we braise and peel these eggs ourselves every day and make them fresh, we never add preservatives, so we can’t do a massive load all at once.

These freshly handmade dishes are the real taste of old-style Taiwan, and all available at very affordable prices. If it goes on like this, we think there’s another 50 years in the tank.