Seven more foreign news outlets have applied to open bureaus in Taiwan this year, including the New York Times, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Friday, following China’s expulsion of US journalists in March.
After the US placed a personnel cap on four Chinese media companies, China responded by banning US reporters for the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal from covering news from China, Hong Kong and Macau.
“We maintain bureaus in Beijing and Shanghai with correspondents, and are hopeful that the Chinese government will allow all of our reporters to return,” New York Times spokeswoman Danielle Rhoades Ha said in an e-mail to the Taipei Times.
“As a result of the expulsion order, some affected correspondents are in the process of relocating to Taipei and Seoul. Our newsroom has not missed a beat and continues to cover China fairly and aggressively,” she said.
“It’s great having @nytimes reporters in #Taiwan. Our vibrant international media landscape is much the richer for their presence,” Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) wrote on Twitter on Friday. “Welcome & enjoy the country’s freedom in producing all the news that’s fit to print!”
Ministry spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) said that the ministry has also welcomed the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal to establish branches in Taiwan, although they have not formally submitted requests.
Including the new applications, 59 foreign news outlets are stationed in Taiwan from 16 nations: France, Germany, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Norway, the Philippines, Singapore, Slovakia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and the US, she said.
The number of foreign journalists in Taiwan has increased in the past few years, as the nation’s press freedom has been praised by the global community, she added.
Before the nation’s presidential and legislative elections on Jan. 11, more than 210 foreign journalists, including nearly 60 originally stationed in Taiwan, had applied for permits to cover the elections, the ministry said.
Days after it was banned in China, a Mandarin ballad satirizing nationalistic Chinese Internet users is trending at No. 1 on YouTube in Taiwan and Hong Kong. Fragile (玻璃心), by Taiwan-based Malaysian rapper Namewee (黃明志) and Australian singer Kimberley Chen (陳芳語), offers a tongue-in-cheek apology to “little pink” Internet users, a disparaging term that describes patriotic “keyboard warriors” from China. After racking up more than 9 million views on YouTube, the song reached No. 3 on the site in Malaysia on Thursday, according to Kworb, a Web site that analyzes music data from around the world. It is also the only Chinese-language
NO CHANGE: US officials indicated that the ‘one China’ policy remains in place, while the NATO chief avoided discussing Biden’s comment in an effort to ease tensions US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said on Friday that the Pentagon would continue to support Taiwan’s military, but he declined to say if US troops would defend the island against China, after US President Joe Biden said there was a US “commitment” to do so. “As we’ve done over multiple administrations, we will continue to help Taiwan with the sorts of capabilities that it needs to defend itself,” Austin said at NATO headquarters. “So we’ll stay focused on those things, and I won’t engage in any hypotheticals with respect to Taiwan,” he told reporters. Biden on Thursday sparked a new firestorm
PROTECTION: The Ministry of Health and Welfare is aiming for a full vaccination rate of 30 percent, and allowing mixed first and second doses to boost coverage rates Whether Taiwan reopens its borders would depend on the nation’s vaccination coverage rate and the COVID-19 situation in other countries, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Shih Chung-liang (石崇良) said yesterday. The Ministry of Health and Welfare is aiming for a 70 percent first-dose vaccination coverage and 30 percent two-dose coverage as part of its consideration, Shih told a media briefing following the weekly Cabinet meeting. In spite of a relatively stable COVID-19 situation in Taiwan, and calls from foreign missions and businesses in the country to allow more international travelers, the government is maintaining strict border control measures. Since March last year,
SCENIC TRAIN TOURS: TRA Director-General Du Wei said experts on aesthetics and railway culture have worked for 10 months to restore the blue locomotive Breezy Blue, the Taiwan Railways Administration’s (TRA) tourism train, is to be launched on the South Link Line on Saturday. The railway operator spent about 10 months restoring the blue diesel-powered train, which first provided service to students and commuters before being outsourced to Lion Travel, which organizes railway tour packages. TRA Director-General Du Wei (杜微) told reporters on the sidelines of a ceremony in Pingtung County’s Fangliao Township (枋寮) that the agency hopes that the restored Breezy Blue would provide an authentic experience to railway fans as well as those with fond memories of riding the blue trains to work or