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    Aug 05, 2016

    Taiwan envoy to S'pore slammed for drink driving


    TAIWAN'S newly appointed envoy to Singapore has sparked an uproar after he was booked for drink driving in Taipei following his swearing-in for the post.

    Some warned that the offence would be a diplomatic disgrace if committed in Singapore, whose law is much harsher.

    Antonio Chiang, a former newspaper columnist and an adviser to President Tsai Ing-wen during her election campaign, was stopped by police for a breathalyser test on Tuesday night, Taiwan's ET Today reported.

    The test showed he had a blood alcohol content of 0.27 mg/l, almost double the legal limit of 0.15 mg/l, the Central News Agency reported.

    Mr Chiang, 72, was later charged with posing threat to public safety.

    Some legislators from the opposition party Kuomintang clamoured for his replacement as Taiwan's top diplomat in Singapore, saying he had set a bad example for all civil servants.

    The Taiwan Against Drink Driving association also protested, saying replacing Mr Chiang would drive home the message that drink driving is a very serious offence.

    But legislator Huang Wei-cher from the ruling Democratic Progressive Party said "nothing untoward" happened in the incident and so replacement was not necessary.

    Some Taiwanese media said Mr Chiang is tapped by Ms Tsai to cultivate ties in South-east Asia as her government is downgrading links with mainland China.