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March 27, 2017

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Sediq officially recognized as 14th indigenous tribe in Taiwan

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Cabinet officially recognized the Sediq yesterday, the 14th indigenous tribe in Taiwan to gain formal status. Commenting on the issue during a weekly Cabinet meeting in which the recognition was granted, Premier Chang Chun-hsiung noted that the Sediq had been previously grouped by the government as a member of the Atayal, although the Sediq considers itself a different tribe from the Atayal.

"The recognition of the Sediq as an individual tribe is a show of respect for the will of the ethnic group and is consistent with the principle of fairness underlying our ethnic policy," Chang said.

To honor the self-identities of indigenous peoples,the government has since 2001 recognized four other indigenous tribes, namely the Thao, Kavalan, Truku and Sakizaya, in addition to the Sediq, the premier pointed out.

According to data from the Council of Indigenous Peoples, the Sediq population totals 6,000 to 7,000 people and is mainly distributed in areas along the border separating Nantou and Hualien counties.

Taiwan's indigenous people — the native groups that predate all other communal groups in Taiwan — could have originated either from the southern part of China or from the vast Austronesian-language region.

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