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June 23, 2017

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Ex-deputy minister 'betrayed' info: MAC

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Minister Wang Yu-chi (王郁琦) confirmed yesterday that former MAC Deputy Minister Chang Hsien-yao (張顯耀) has indeed betrayed confidential information and was reported for his actions.

The MAC minister made the remarks at a press conference held yesterday, stating that the MAC has completed the information study requested by the Investigation Bureau and turned in relevant information after verifying the classified degree of each piece. The Investigation Bureau will release the results after the probe is finished, said Wang.

After the Cabinet announced Chang's supposed resignation last Saturday, Chang fought back the on second day, claiming that he had been forced to quit and was "betrayed by his superiors." Wang himself responded to Chang's accusations, saying that he had received a tip-off of Chang's whistle-blowing in July.

"From my perspective, I believe that there are qualms over (whether Chang had leaked classified information), and that it is necessary to begin a probe on the matter," Wang said.

Investigation Bureau Chief Wang Chung-yi (汪忠一) contacted Wang on Tuesday, also sending him the reports of Chang's less-than-satisfactory work ethic. The MAC was then asked to grade the level of confidence regarding the information Chang had supposedly leaked.

As the case is still under investigation, Wang yesterday declined to comment on the nature of the case, the scope of the probe and the source of the reports.

When local media outlets questioned the belated start of the investigations and the supposedly coincidental timing of the Investigation Bureau's intervention, Wang noted that upon receiving the reports, it was decided to begin the probe right after Wang's "job relocation" is completed.

"We contacted the Investigation Bureau after a related presidential decree became effective, and discovered that the bureau has relevant information as well, thus allowing us more authority to begin investigating," said Wang.

Nature of Leaked Info Unclear to Chang

Chang was only notified that he had leaked classified information and was reported for his actions, but not the nature of the information he has let slip, said Wang. "I informed him to prepare himself for a probe, and he would know about the case after the investigation has begun," Wang added.

Wang also refused to comment on whether Chang's alleged information leak involved damages to national security. "Currently, the issue is to clarify the questionable aspects of Chang's former job," said Wang.

The minister stated that it was he who decided to launch a probe, but Chang was entitled to an opportunity to explain his actions as the case concerns his rights and honor. "In case the investigation proves Chang innocent, we have arranged for him to take another position equivalent to his previous one, so there would be an opportunity to retract our decision ... but Chang has declined our offer," said Wang.

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