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Taiwan activates emergency mechanism for expats in Vietnam
Central News Agency
2014-05-14 11:17 PM
Taipei, May 14 (CNA) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) on Wednesday said it has activated an emergency rescue mechanism for Taiwanese expats in Vietnam as a precaution against the anti-China protests that threaten to endanger the safety of all ethnic Chinese in that country. Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeou told a national security conference that if need be, the government will send aircraft to transport Taiwanese nationals home for their own safety. The decision is a response to riots in the southern Vietnamese provinces of Binh Duong and Dong Nai, where protesters have responded with violence against what they consider a Chinese intrusion into their territorial waters in the South China Sea, taking out their aggression by attacking and looting factories -- including those owned by Taiwanese nationals. As of press time, two Taiwanese had been reported injured and two mainland Chinese killed amid the violence, according to MOFA. The ministry called on the Vietnamese government to do everything in its power to ensure safety for Taiwanese expatriates still in Vietnam, even as Taiwan was beginning to arrange seats on airplanes and other vehicles for its citizens who might be threatened. Taiwanese officials based in Vietnam had received assurances from local authorities that they will send personnel to pick up Taiwanese citizens still stranded in their factories, MOFA said. The officials have also been in contact with Taiwanese business associations in affected areas to prepare vehicles to remove nationals to safety while waiting for passage home, MOFA added. Taiwan's representative office in Ho Chi Minh City was ready to offer consular services to nationals who might need to flee in a hurry, according to a MOFA statement issued late Wednesday. (BY Tang Pei-chun and S.C. Chang)
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