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Putting pieces back together in Taiwan

[ 2009-08-24 12:48]     字号 [] [] []  
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New homes for disaster victims in Taiwan are now being assembled with help from three mainland technicians.

The offer of prefabricated houses was first declined by residents in Kaohsiung county, who feared they contained excess levels of the chemical formol.

But the Taiwan inspection authority announced yesterday that the prefabricated houses from the mainland are safe.

The trio is the first of 10 mainland technicians invited by Taiwan to enter disaster areas and provide guidance for assembling the houses for the victims, Xinhua News Agency reported.

Taiwan has been reluctant to let the mainland offer direct help to disaster-hit areas. Although four officials from the mainland's Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits were allowed to enter Taiwan to convey disaster relief supplies last week, they were not approved to enter disaster-hit areas to visit victims.

Local authorities said so far more than 400 homeless families have applied for the prefabricated houses.

The third batch of prefabricated houses donated by the mainland to help hundreds of Taiwan families left homeless by Typhoon Morakot will land in Taiwan today. A total of 1,000 prefab houses will land in Taiwan by the end of August.

The death toll from Morakot rose to at least 650 yesterday after the worst typhoon to hit Taiwan in half a century.

Liu Chao-shiuan, head of Taiwan's "executive Yuan", said 160 were confirmed dead, with another 490 listed as missing and presumed dead.

In Shiao Lin, the village hardest hit by massive mudslides, hundreds of soldiers were searching the area. Some looked for floating bodies while others prepared to dig up more than 400 bodies believed buried under meters of mud, said military relief operation spokesman Tai Chan-teh.

In addition to the Taiwan authorities' three-year reconstruction budget of about NT$ 100 billion ($3.1 billion), the Chinese mainland contributed 781 million yuan ($115 million) two weeks after the disaster hit Taiwan.

The mainland's donation came from all parts of the country, including people in Sichuan province who received generous support from Taiwan compatriots and Buddhists and monks who pray for blessings of the typhoon victims on the island.


1 What was the death toll from Morakot?

2 It was the worst typhoon to hit the country in how long?

3 How much had the Chinese mainland contributed to the region two weeks after the disaster hit?


1.At least 650 yesterday

2.Over half a century

3.781 million yuan

(英语点津 许雅宁编辑)

Putting pieces back together in Taiwan

Putting pieces back together in TaiwanBrendan joined The China Daily in 2007 as a language polisher in the Language Tips Department, where he writes a regular column for Chinese English Language learners, reads audio news for listeners and anchors the weekly video news in addition to assisting with on location stories. Elsewhere he writes Op'Ed pieces with a China focus that feature in the Daily's Website opinion section.

He received his B.A. and Post Grad Dip from Curtin University in 1997 and his Masters in Community Development and Management from Charles Darwin University in 2003. He has taught in Japan, England, Australia and most recently China. His articles have featured in the Bangkok Post, The Taipei Times, The Asia News Network and in-flight magazines.