TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Calling for stability after the loss of Taiwan's top commander and seven other high-ranking military officers in a helicopter accident the previous day, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) announced that the Chief of the General Staff will be given a posthumous promotion.
Deputy Chief of General Staff Liu Chih-pin (劉志斌) has been tapped to temporarily succeed Chief of the General Staff Shen Yi-ming (沈一鳴), as the supreme commander of the country's armed forces.
President Tsai convened an urgent one-hour meeting on Friday morning (Jan. 3) with top-ranking state and military officials.
Those present included Minister of National Defense Yen Teh-fa (嚴德發), National Security Council (NSC) Secretary-General David T. Lee (李大維), NSC Deputy Secretary-General Chen Wen-jenq (陳文政), NSC adviser York Chen (陳俊麟), Army Commander General Chen Po-yu (陳寶餘), Navy Commander Huang Shu-kuang (黃曙光), and Deputy Chief of General Staff Liu Chih-pin, according to the Office of the President.
The meeting kicked off with a minute of silence in memory of the late Shen. Tsai then addressed the officials to give the Taiwanese people and military peace of mind and keep them abreast of the rapidly changing situation in the region, summing up three points to the attendees.
First, Tsai said that the best way to remember and honor Sheng is for officials to stick to their posts to ensure smooth operations and safeguard national security. Second, she asked them to keep abreast of the dynamic situation around the Taiwan Strait and improve preparations for any potential threats.
Third, Tsai called for preventive maintenance checks and safety inspections of military hardware without compromise.
The president also advised the officials to do their utmost to comfort and compensate the families of the victims as well as provide the best medical assistance to the injured. A thorough investigation into the crash is also a top priority, said Tsai.