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Defense, MOFA, and cross-strait affairs heads unchanged in new Cabinet

01/29/2023 06:45 PM
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Incumbent Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng (left), Minister of the Mainland Affairs Council Chiu Tai-san (center) and Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (right). CNA file photo
Incumbent Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng (left), Minister of the Mainland Affairs Council Chiu Tai-san (center) and Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (right). CNA file photo

Taipei, Jan. 29 (CNA) Incumbent Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng (邱國正) and Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) will continue serving in Premier-designate Chen Chien-jen's (陳建仁) new Cabinet, Chen said in a Facebook post on Sunday.

Chiu Tai-san (邱太三), minister of the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC), the top government agency handling cross-strait affairs, will also remain in the new Cabinet, according to the post.

The decision to keep the three officials in their current posts, as the Cabinet is reshuffled after Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) submitted his resignation last week, was made following a meeting between Chen and President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文).

The president is in charge of issues pertaining to the country's national defense, foreign affairs, and cross-strait relations, according to the Additional Articles of the Constitution of the Republic of China, Taiwan's de-jure name.

The post added that remaining appointments, including those of deputy ministerial posts, will be announced on Monday.

According to Chen Tsung-yen (陳宗彥), who has been designated the new Cabinet spokesperson, while the MAC minister is unchanged, Chiu's deputies will leave their positions.

Chen told local media on Sunday that Chan Chih-hung (詹志宏), vice chairman and secretary-general of the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF), will become a deputy MAC minister, replacing incumbent Chiu Chui-cheng (邱垂正), who will continue serving as SEF vice chairman while simultaneously taking up the secretary-general post left vacant by Chan.

Former Taipei City Councilor Liang Wen-chieh (梁文傑) has also been tapped as another deputy MAC minister, to replace incumbent Wu Mei-hung (吳美紅), who will be appointed deputy minister of the Ocean Affairs Council (OAC), the spokesman said.

He added that another OAC deputy minister Chou Mei-wu (周美伍), who concurrently serves as head of the Coast Guard Administration, will remain in his current positions.

Chen Chien-jen, the former vice president during Tsai's first term from 2016-2020, was officially named Su's successor on Friday.

Over the past few days, the premier-designate has unveiled 39 appointments to his new Cabinet via social media, the majority of whom also served in his predecessor's Cabinet in the same positions.

The new Cabinet is expected to be sworn into office on Tuesday, a day after Su leads his Cabinet officials to resign en masse, according to the senior officials.

Speaking with local media earlier on Sunday, Eric Chu (朱立倫), chairman of the main opposition Kuomintang, said Chen's Cabinet seemed to be playing a "caretaker" and "transitional" role, without elaborating.

There are few highlights in the Cabinet reshuffle, Chu commented, while calling on the new Cabinet to work harder.

(By Teng Pei-ju)


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