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300 youth ambassadors to depart on diplomatic mission

2012/05/29 14:18:29

Taipei, May 29 (CNA) Three hundred Taiwanese students will travel to 30-plus countries this summer to promote cultural exchanges and enhance bilateral ties in what the Ministry of Foreign Affairs described Tuesday as the largest scale youth ambassador program in years.

The program encourages young people to take part in diplomacy and present different facets of Taiwan to host countries, said Vice Foreign Minister Simon Ko at the flag presentation ceremony held before their departure.

A total of 301 students from 25 universities and colleges around Taiwan have been selected to visit 21 diplomatic allies and 17 other countries without diplomatic ties to Taiwan, such as Argentina, Brazil, Israel, Germany, Spain and Italy.

This year's program is the largest in scale since it was launched in 2009 because of its positive feedback and popularity, Ko said in a speech.

Ko reminded youth ambassadors to "demonstrate Taiwan's pluralistic culture and soft power, as well as the warmth and good upbringing of Taiwan's youth."

Leehter Yao, president of National Taipei University of Technology (NTUT), urged his students to not only introduce the country's breathtaking vistas but also manifest the warm hospitality of Taiwanese people.

Lu Yu-cheng, leader of the NTUT 6-member ambassador mission, said his group will bring solar-powered toy cars to Saint Kitts and Nevis, one of Taiwan's diplomatic allies in the Caribbean, this July.

The team looked forward to explaining to people there how solar energy can be applied to everyday living, he said.

(By Nancy Liu)