The top story from this past week was that Taiwan and China have signed two new agreements, bringing the total number of pacts between the two sides to 21.
The agreements on meteorological exchanges and earthquake monitoring were signed on Thursday, during the tenth round of cross-strait talks. The signatories are Taiwan's Straits Exchange Foundation and China's Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits. The two semi-official organizations are responsible for handling cross-strait negotiations in the absence of formal ties between the two sides.
The two organizations said that the agreements will strengthen both sides' ability to predict disasters like typhoons and respond to earthquakes. Taiwan hopes that better cross-strait cooperation will help it join the World Meteorological Organization.
Also this past week, the Cabinet announced six new appointments in its latest reshuffle.
According to the announcements, which were made on Wednesday, Cabinet Secretary-General Chen Wei-jen will replace Lee Hong-yuan as interior minister. Late on Tuesday Lee turned down an offer for appointment as a minister without portfolio and decided to return to working as a professor.
Among other new appointments, Minister Without Portfolio Simon Chang will head the newly created Ministry of Science and Technology, and Minister of Environmental Protection Stephen Shen will be replaced by Wei Kuo-yen.
Premier Jiang Yi-huah said that he and President Ma Ying-jeou had decided on the new appointments. He also said he hopes the reshuffle will facilitate the functioning of the government.
And finally this past week, the son of former Vice President Lien Chan has announced that he's running for Taipei Mayor. Forty-four-year-old Sean Lien, from the ruling party – the Kuomintang (KMT) -- made the long-expected announcement on Monday.
Lien said he delayed the announcement because he was waiting for his doctor to give him a clean bill of health. Sean Lien was shot in the face at close range while campaigning for a fellow party member in 2010. He said that because of the incident, he can relate to the suffering of families who have gone through difficulties. Lien said his priority is to help the underprivileged in the city, and that if he is elected, he will donate his entire salary to charity.