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MOFA to write to foreign media if nation's image continues to worsen

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said Friday that the ministry will instruct all embassies and overseas representative offices to write to local media to explain the government's stance if the nation's image continues to be marred by the scandal involved the former first family's alleged funneling of large sums of cash into foreign bank accounts.
Officials indicated that the Foreign Ministry is raising its alert on the international response to the scandal and is ready to take more action to protect the country's image.
"If the international media continues to report on the matter, I think our MOFA officials will have to write to the media, " MOFA spokesman Henry Chen said. "The basic stance will be that the government is determined to tackle corruption."
The ministry released a statement a day earlier for use by the country's overseas representative offices and embassies to explain the scandal.
The statement said the Republic of China holds a firm stance of opposing money-laundering, an offense that harms social justice and abuses international financial freedom, adding that the ministry will fully cooperate with the investigation and ask for assistance from related foreign governments and international anti-money-laundering organizations in order to clarify the truth as soon as possible
Noting that laws regulating public servants' political funds have failed to keep pace with Taiwan's democratic progress, the MOFA stressed that consensus has been reached across party lines at the Legislative Yuan recently that a draft "Property of Unknown Source Act" will be reviewed in the next legislative session.
"These principles are aimed at letting the international media know that our government is doing a lot, " Chen said. "We hope that the international community will understand that the government is not only hard-working but also proactive in fighting corruption, as it is something it finds completely unacceptable," he added.
He confirmed that the Control Yuan sent two of its committee members and an investigator to the Foreign Ministry Thursday, saying that the ministry offered its full cooperation and provided information related to the case.
Former President Chen Shui-bian admitted last Thursday that he lied about the campaign expenses for his two mayoral elections and two presidential elections between 1993 and 2004 and that his wife wired surplus campaign contributions into overseas bank accounts held by members of his family.
His confession came only after the Foreign Ministry confirmed earlier that same day that the Swiss authorities have sought Taiwan's help in a probe into a possible money laundering case in Switzerland involving Chen's son Chen Chih-chung and daughter-in-law Huang Jui-ching.
The former president claims that his wife Wu Shu-jen made the wire transfers without his knowledge.
Prosecutors have banned Chen from leaving the country.

Updated : 2021-07-29 08:46 GMT+08:00