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China Re-asserts it is against Self-Determination for Taiwan

China has regarded Taiwan as a wayward province, to be taken by force if necessary, ever since defeated Nationalists fled to Taiwan in 1949 after a civil war with China's Communists.

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Shipping containers at Keelung port, northern Taiwan. The new government wants to seek more diverse trade partners apart from China, in order to revive shrinking trade and boost a stagnating economy. Photo: Reuters

1.3 billion people in China are resolute and united in their decision that they will never allow self-ruled Taiwan to come under Beijing’s ‘One China’ principle, China’s top official in charge of ties with the island said on Thursday, in Beijing’s latest blast at Taipei.

Leader Tsai Ing-wen of Taiwan’s pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party was repeatedly warned by China to join the ‘One China’ principle but the leader assumed that negative consequences might follow if they decide otherwise.

In an inaugural speech by Tsai on Friday, she urged China to keep aside the baggage of history and engage in a positive dialogue. She added that democratic principles will rule Taiwan’s ties with Beijing and peace and unity can be restored.

A meeting took place between Taiwan business representatives where the Head of China’s Taiwan Affairs Office, Zhang Zhijun said, going against “One China” principle will only create an atmosphere of tension and have a negative influence on the ties.

Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen addresses during an inauguration ceremony in Taipei, Taiwan May 20, 2016. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu
Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen addresses during an inauguration ceremony in Taipei, Taiwan May 20, 2016. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

“There is no future in Taiwan independence, and this cannot become an option for Taiwan’s future. This is the conclusion of history,” Zhang said.

“Some people say you must pay attention to broad public opinion in Taiwan, and that one can understand the attitude and feelings of Taiwan’s people formed by its special historical experiences and social environment,” Zhang added.

“But, Taiwan society ought to understand and attach importance to the feelings of the 1.37 billion residents of the mainland,” he further added.

In 1949, ever since the defeated Nationalists have fled to Taiwan after a civil war with China’s communists, China has regarded Taiwan as a unruly province, to be taken by force if the situation demands so.

Foreign powers intruded and carved off bits of the declining Chinese empire for themselves in the late 19th and the early 20th century. People of China still have a painful and deep memory of the period of humiliation and national weakness.

“They have a rock-solid will that has remained consistent towards protecting national unity and not allowing the country to be split,” said Zhang.

In response to Zhang’s comments, the Mainland Affairs Council, Taiwan’s ministerial agency in charge of ties with China said, Tsai has committed to ensure the status quo in relations with China and to sustain peace and stability.

From 1895-1945, Taiwan was a part of the Japanese colony and gained the control of the island from imperial China. Therefore, China doesn’t permit the public discussion of views that will challenge the notion of Taiwan being a fragment of China.

Most of the Taiwanese feel that that the Japanese rule had a positive effect on their land. It brought progress to an undeveloped island where only agriculture prevailed. (Reuters)

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Deadly Blast Jostles Somalia , President Declares Three Days of National Mourning

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the bombing, but similar attacks have been carried out by the Islamic extremist group al Shabab

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BLAST
A Somali soldier helps a civilian who was wounded in a blast in the capital of Mogadishu, Somalia. VOA

Somalia, October 15, 2017 : Somalia’s president has declared three days of national mourning following a deadly truck bombing Saturday in the capital, Mogadishu, which left many people dead and dozens injured, including a VOA reporter.

President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo said the country “will observe three days of mourning for innocent victims and flags will be flown at half-mast.”

Farmaajo also called on citizens to unite against terror, saying it is “time to unite and pray together. Terror won’t win.”

Blast
Somalis gather and search for survivors by destroyed buildings at the scene of a blast in the capital Mogadishu, Somalia. VOA

Earlier Saturday, the blast occurred near Zobe, a busy intersection in Somalia’s capital, killing more than 50 people, health officials and witnesses said.

Dead, injured

Mahad Salad Adan, a Somali lawmaker who sustained a slight wound from the blast, told VOA that more than 100 people, most of them civilians, were killed in the explosion. He said more 200 others were wounded as Mogadishu hospitals struggled to treat the wounded.

Abdulkaidr Mohamed Abdulle, a VOA Somali correspondent in Mogadishu, was among the injured. His wife, Samira Abdirahman Sheikh Adam, confirmed to VOA that he had sustained injuries to his neck, head and right hand.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the bombing, but similar attacks have been carried out by the Islamic extremist group al Shabab. The group, which is linked to al-Qaida, is trying to overthrow the government in an effort to establish strict Islamic rule.

The United States and the United Nations strongly condemned Saturday’s blast and offered condolence to the lives lost and those wounded in the attack.

Buildings leveled

Buildings around the area were leveled by the explosion from a truck bomb, and dozens of destroyed cars littered the streets.

Blast
Mogadishu on the map. VOA

Health officials said Saturday’s bombing was the largest blast in recent memory in Mogadishu. They also called for residents to donate blood to help with the wounded.

“For 10 years, I have been in the emergency service. … I cannot tell the exact death toll, but together I can say we have transported hundreds of people on our 10 ambulances,” said Dr. Abdulkadir Abdirahman Adem, director of the Amin ambulance service. “And economically, I think this is the worst (bombing) ever in Mogadishu in a single day.”

Government soldiers had cordoned off the area, and officials said the death toll is expected to rise as rescue workers find bodies in the rubble.

ALSO READ Terror Strikes Somalia: Five killed in Twin Car Bomb Blast in Mogadishu

Most of the victims were civilians. The exact target of the blast remains unclear, though there are several hotels frequented by government officials and members of various diaspora communities.

“This is a disaster. We ask all Somalis to reach us, to help us in the search of dead bodies under the debris. We appeal to the doctors, to those who have digging machines,” Mogadishu Mayor Tabid Abdi Mohamed said on government radio.

Al-Shabab

Saturday’s blast came hours after al-Shabab militants regained control of Barire, a strategic Somalian town in a farming area along the Shabelle river, 45 kilometers from Mogadishu.

The explosion also comes two days after Somalia’s defense minister and military chief, who were leading the fight against Islamist militants, both resigned from the government, citing personal reasons.

Some analysts believe militants tend to carry out such attacks when there are security lapses.

“The resignation of the country’s defense and military chiefs gave the militants a gab [opening] to carry out such disastrous attack,” said Mogadishu University’s Dr. Abdul Kadir Liban Isse. (VOA)

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China pays Tribute to Mahatma Gandhi, Celebrates Gandhi Jayanti in Beijing

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Mahatma Gandhi
Mahatma Gandhi

Beijing, Oct 02: China on Monday celebrated the 148th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, with the India Embassy in Beijing releasing commemorative postage stamps on the Ramayana.

Many Chinese nationals offered flowers to a statue of Gandhi at Beijing’s Chaoyang Park, while school children recited his famous quotes in Mandarin on a nippy overcast day.

“Gandhiji looked forward to a day when a free India and a free China could cooperate in friendship and brotherhood for their own good and for the benefit of Asia and the World,” Wilson Babu, Charge D’Affaires at the Indian embassy, said.

“Leaders of our two countries have been striving to build strong India-China relations based on Gandhiji’s ideals of world peace and respect for all human beings.”

In Shanghai, the Indian Consulate organised a series of events including a memorial lecture, screening of a documentary film and a painting completion for children of the Indian community.

Mahatma Gandhi has become increasingly popular in China, with many Chinese researchers studying his ideology of non-violence.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was born on October 2, 1869, in Porbandar in Gujarat to Putlibai and Karamchand Gandhi. (IANS)

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India Progressing Better than US, China in Digital Healthcare

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Digital Healthcare
Digital Healthcare in India. Pixabay

New Delhi, Sep 22, 2017: India has progressed better than US and China in terms of its specialist doctors adopting digital modes to interact with patients and prescribe medicines, a study revealed on Friday.

According to the study, gap in US between the face-to-face medicines and medical representatives triggered mails narrowed down from 15 per cent in 2015 to 12 per cent in 2017. The study stated that digital channels are slowly but surely gaining ground over traditional ones. This year, the gap further narrowed to around 12 per cent.

 “India witnessed the narrowing of the gap between face-to-face tablet and medical representatives triggered mail from 34 per cent in 2015 to 8 per cent in 2017,” said the study conducted by Indegene — a company offering research and development solutions to healthcare and pharmaceutical enterprises.

The highest number of specialist who have adopted digital platform to deal with patients are Cardiologists, General Surgeons, Pulmonologists, Endocrinologists, and Oncologists.

(IANS)