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NSB head takes full responsibility over ramming incident

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Taiwan's top intelligence chief yesterday said he takes full responsibility over the incident in which a truck rammed the Presidential Office building earlier this year, even if it means he could be replaced soon.

National Security Bureau (NSB, 國安局) Director-general Tsai Der-sheng (蔡得勝), however, said he has not received information saying that he will be leaving his post to take blame for the incident.

At approximately 5 a.m. on Jan. 25, Chang Teh-cheng (張德正), 41, drove a 35-ton gravel truck through the Presidential Office's steel fence, over tire spikes and into a bullet-proof glass door at the front of the building.

He was found unconscious and was rushed to nearby National Taiwan University Hospital for emergency treatment.

The Taipei District Prosecutors Office on March 6 indicted Chang for attempted murder and four other lesser charges, including causing damage to a historic building.

On March 7, the Presidential Office announced that it had given Tsai a verbal warning for his bureau's failure to take better precautionary efforts to prevent the incident. NSB Special Service Center deputy commander Hsu Yen-ching (許燕情) was given a demerit.

Asked to confirm media speculations that he could be replaced soon to take responsibility over the incident, the NSB chief said yesterday that he was not aware of any such personnel reshuffle plan.

As the NSB head, Tsai said he takes full responsibility for the incident and he believes it was appropriate for him to receive a verbal warning as a punishment.

Tsai, however, added that he would not mind if the president ultimately decided to let him go, saying that it is a good thing for the country to replace existing officials with new ones.

Tsai made the comments on the sideline of the Legislature's National Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee yesterday.

During the committee session yesterday, Tsai admitted errors on the part of the NSB during the truck ramming incident.

Tsai told lawmakers that the NSB failed to receive warning prior to the incident, and that security in front of the Presidential Office Building should not have let the truck ram the office in the first place.

NSB Supports Presidential Office Building Relocation

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 KMT accuses DPP of trying to strangle trade pact 
National Security Bureau Director-General Tsai De-sheng (蔡得勝) speaks at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei, yesterday. Tsai said yesterday that he has always been in favor of relocating the Presidential Office, adding, however, that there are no ideal locations at the moment.

(CNA)

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