Taiwan Current Affairs - 2019

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Taiwan: First Asian country to Legalise Same-Sex Marriage

On May 17, 2019 in a landmark decision, Taiwan became the first country in Asia to legalise same-sex marriage thus giving gay couples the ‘Right to Marry’.

Key Highlights

  • About: The Taiwanese parliament took the historic step by passing a law in favour of same-sex couples and allowing them to form ‘exclusive permanent unions’.
  • Features:
  • The bill was passed on 17 May which is celebrated annually as the ‘International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia’.
  • The law contains a clause that allows couples to apply for a ‘marriage registration’ with the government agencies.
  • It also offer few adoption rights to same-sex couples like allowing spouses to adopt biological children of their partner. But does not allows same-sex couples to co-adopt.
  • LGBTQ Rights: Taiwan has long been a hub for LGBT activism. Even its annual gay pride parade is the largest in the region. The Taiwanese LGBTQ community has now been campaigning for years to have similar and equal marriage rights as heterosexual couples. The move marks a huge victory for the community’s struggle and rights.
  • Significance: With even president of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen campaigning for a platform of marriage equality, and the historic judgement that followed, this places Taiwan at the vanguard of Asia’s rapidly growing gay rights movement.
  • Importance: It is a good start and major step towards true equality and ending discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Geographical Facts: Taiwan

  • It is officially called as Republic of China (ROC) and is a self-governing island nation in East Asia.
  • States Neighbouring Taiwan: The Philippines in south, People’s Republic of China (PRC) in West, Japan in northeast.
  • It is in western Pacific Ocean and lies about 160 km off the coast of southeastern China (SCS).

Month: Categories: International

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One of India’s Smallest Orchids discovered in Assam

Lecanorchis taiwaniana (The parasitic bloom), a type of orchid was accidentally discovered in Assam by Assam’s forest officer named Jatindra Sarma . He is also the Member Secretary of State Medicinal Plants Board.

Key Findings:

  • The orchid species is already known in Japan, Taiwan, and Laos. This is the first time it is discovered in India.
  • Its discovery was published in Japanese Journal of Botany with title as “new record for the flora in India”.

Characteristics

  • Lecanorchis taiwaniana is a mycoheterotroph, which means it is one of two known types of parasitic plants which have abandoned photosynthesis. As it derives nutrients and its energy from fungus, it may be of herbal importance.
  • It is a variant of a Japanese orchid.
  • It is India’s one of smallest botanically recorded orchids in terms of size and duration of bloom.

Importance: The discovery of Lecanorchis taiwaniana adds to the orchid wealth of northeast India (NEI). India has about 1,300 species of orchids out of which 800 are found in NEI, about 300 species are found in Western Ghats and 200 in northwestern Himalayas.

Month: Categories: Environment

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