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Cingjing hostels that violate regulations won't be demolished, yet: MOI minister

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Minister of the Interior Lee Hong-yuan (李鴻源) yesterday said he will not order the immediate demolition of hostels at Cingjing Farm (清境農場) in Nantou County that violate regulations, noting that he cares about the employees' lives.

Lee's remark came after several Cingjing hostel operators expressed their concern over their businesses and reputations.

Lee said the Ministry of the Interior (MOI) will announce the names of the hostels located within the middle- to high-risk scope for natural disasters at Cingjing within two weeks, however, it does not mean the MOI will raze those disqualified hostels right away.

Nantou Criticizes MOI

Acting Nantou Magistrate Chen Chi-ching (陳志清) yesterday criticized that it is “reckless” for the MOI to say that 64 percent of CingJing Farm is within the middle- to high-risk area.

The maps that the MOI adopted symbolize “potential risks” to natural disasters, “but it does not mean those potential risky areas are definitely dangerous,” Chen said, adding that the MOI's recent remarks had caused panic and concerns to hostel operators and visitors.

Apart from that, it is also misleading for the MOI to say that there are only four legal hostels at Cingjing Farm, Chen said. Hostels that do not comply with current regulations do not mean they are not safe to stay in, he noted, explaining that some of the hostels “merely” violated the Construction Law to expand their scope.

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Cingjing Farm is seen in this aerial photo. Minister of the Interior Lee Hong-yuan (李鴻源) said the ministry will not demolish illegal hostels at Cingjing Farm immediately, noting that he cares about the employees' livelihoods. (CNA)

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