TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Taiwan's government has rejected an offer by China to send rescue workers to aid in the search for survivors after a deadly magnitude 6.0 earthquake struck eastern Taiwan's Hualien, but has accepted the assistance of a team of experts from Japan because of they posses specialized equipment that Taiwan does not have.
In response to a question at a press conference yesterday (Feb. 8) as whether Taiwan would accept assistance from China for rescue and relief efforts from the quake, Presidential Office spokesman Alex Huang (黃重諺), said that Taiwan is an extremely developed country and has no shortage of relief workers and supplies, and though many countries around the world have offered assistance and personnel, "We at this time are politely declining their offers," reported CNA
However, Huang said that Taiwan did accept a contingent from Japan because they posses body-heat detection equipment that Taiwanese rescue crews do not. Therefore, several Japanese technicians have arrived with devices to hopefully help determine if their are any survivors or other stranded individuals and assist with their rescue.
Apple Daily reports 1,000 Taiwanese rescue workers are already on the scene, where they are working to rescue the seven people believed to still be trapped in the rubble of the collapsed Yun Men Tsui Ti Building. A Japanese team of seven experts arrived yesterday at around 3 p.m. yesterday (Feb. 8) to help find the missing persons inside the building.
The Japanese team includes experts from Japan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department, the Tokyo Fire Department, the Japan Coast Guard, the Japan International Cooperation Agency and other units.
In an ironic twist of fate, given the current animosity between the governments of China and Japan, Japanese rescuers and their technology is being used to help pinpoint the location of a family of five missing Chinese tourists trapped inside the rubble of the Yun Men Tsui Ti Building. They are believed to be inside room 201 of the Beauty Inn, which was situated on the second and third floors of the ill-fated 12-story building.
Special device Japanese have brought to help detect signs of life in the rubble. (CNA image)
Japanese team heading to Yun Men Tsui Ti Building on Feb. 9. (CNA image)
Japanese team arriving on the scene yesterday (Feb. 8). (CNA image)