Taiwan marks anniversary of Asia’s first gay marriage law | AFP

As Taiwan celebrated its one-year anniversary of becoming Asia’s first country to legalize same-sex marriages, an LGBT rights group is proposing an amendment that would give all international union couples the same legal rights regardless of their home country. Taiwan’s current gay marriage law bars couples from marrying if their foreign partner is from a country which does not recognise same-sex unions.

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Baseball fans in Taiwan return to the stands | AFP

Taiwanese baseball fans cheer their teams at live stadium games, after the island kept coronavirus infections down and its professional sports leagues running despite the pandemic.

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Field of dreams: Taiwan baseball draws foreign fans during sports shutdown | AFP

A troupe of robots bang drums while cheerleaders broadcast their dance routines to fans on mobile phones. Welcome to Taiwanese baseball. Foreign fans starved of the sport are tuning in to Taiwan’s often-overlooked league as the island basks in the glow of being one of the few places in the world hosting live sports.

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Taiwanese sculptor gives discarded gods a home | AFP

Every spare surface of Lin Hsin-lai’s four-storey shop in Taiwan is crammed with a pantheon of celestial beings, testament to the decades he has spent sheltering and restoring unwanted statues of gods. NΒ°1QN674NΒ°1QW7PG

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Taiwan students pray to Confucius as examination season begins | AFP

Students in Taipei pray at the Confucius temple for good luck and blessing as Taiwan enters examination season. Taiwanese schools were re-opened in late February following an extended Lunar New Year holiday due to the coronavirus outbreak. Despite its proximity and trade links with China, Taiwan has so far managed to keep a lid on the pandemic now sweeping the globe.

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Taipei 101 Tower lights up for Earth Day | AFP

“Protect the earth together,” “Bring your own utensils and straws,” “Switch off un-needed lights and conserve energy” – some of the slogans lit up on the facade of the Taipei 101 building as Taiwan celebrates the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.

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Taiwan landmark lit up with the word ZERO as the island reports no new cases of COVID-19 | AFP

Taiwan’s iconic landmark The Grand Hotel lit up with the word ZERO on its exterior as the island reports no new cases of coronavirus for the third time in a week.

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Taiwan holds sea goddess birthday ceremony amid virus pandemic | AFP

A temple in the Taiwanese eastern fishing port of Nanfang’ao holds a ceremony to celebrate the birthday of the sea goddess Matsu. This year’s ceremony was restricted to temple committee members only, as Taiwanese authorities have banned large crowd gatherings across the island to help contain the coronavirus.

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Robot drummers and mannequins in stands for Taiwan’s baseball season | AFP

Cardboard cutouts of fans and mannequins are propped up in the crowdless stands, while robots play live music in an empty stadium in Taiwan as it prepares for a new baseball season. The island will hold the world’s first pro baseball league game since the coronavirus outbreak, bucking the global trend for scrapped sports events during the pandemic. The match originally scheduled for Saturday was postponed until the following day due to heavy rain.

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New COVID-19 test kit unveiled in Taiwan | AFP

A Taiwanese-Danish joint venture company unveils a portable 12-minutes coronavirus testing kit in Taipei as countries worldwide race to test its citizens for infections.

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Taiwanese make donations to help Italy battle coronavirus | AFP

At a hospital in Taiwan, people wait in line to make donations to help Italy in its fight against the coronavirus. People from across the island have contributed more than US$3 million to the relief effort β€” a way of showing their gratitude to Italian Camillian priests who helped build hospitals and clinics in Yilan County after World War Two.

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Women with head for heights embrace tree climbing in Taiwan | AFP

At a campground in central Taiwan, a team of women are using ropes to shimmy up a towering seven storey tall Chinaberry tree, fighting their fear of heights and reconnecting with nature. Tree climbing remains somewhat niche in Taiwan but a growing number of women are embracing the challenge thanks to the island’s first international certified female climber arborist.

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Coronavirus: Food delivery service eases Taiwan night market’s woes | AFP

The coronavirus pandemic is threatening to close one of Taiwan’s most famous cultural scenes — the night market, as foreign tourists stay home and locals avoid crowded areas. One night market in west Taipei is trying to buck the trend. Some hawker stalls at Ningxia Night Market, which boasts four Michelin street foods recommendations, have teamed up with a food delivery service.

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Remote prayers: Taiwan’s faithful limit gatherings amid coronavirus | AFP

Taiwan’s religious communities are cutting back on mass gatherings to curb the spread of the new coronavirus. The island has been praised for its response to the outbreak — despite its cultural and geographical proximity to China, the island has just under 80 cases as of mid-March.

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Taiwan inmates make face masks after virus outbreak | AFP

Inside the barbed wire high walls of Taipei Prison, a small group of inmates methodically press pieces of cloth over sewing machines to make hundreds of protective face masks a day to help ward off the spread of a new coronavirus.

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Coronavirus: Temperature checks in Taiwan metro | AFP

Taipei Metro begins screening commuters for fever symptoms at a pilot location inside the downtown train station. Passengers with a body temperature of 38 degrees or higher will be turned away, in an effort to contain any potential spread of the coronavirus.

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Spin me round: Taiwan holds wheelchair dance competition | AFP

There may be fewer spectators due to coronavirus fears, but that isn’t stopping competitors from dazzling performances at a wheelchair dancing competition in Taiwan. The sport has been gaining popularity among those with lower limb disabilities. Sweden first developed wheelchair dancing as a recreational and rehabilitation sport in 1968, and hosted its first international competition nine years later.

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Coronavirus: Taiwan reopens schools with precautionary measures | AFP

Pupils from kindergarten to high school levels are heading back to the classroom after an extended winter break over coronavirus fears. They have to undergo temperature checks and don face masks. In addition, certain sports activities are temporarily suspended to minimise close body contact.

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Taiwan military shows off furry new members of narcotics squad | AFP

Taiwan’s military police shows off the latest recruits to its narcotics squad — three dogs named Zander, Enoch and Hardy — at a drug-finding demonstration in Taipei on Wednesday. The dogs are the military’s first canine narcotics squad, and 15 more sniffer dogs are set to join their ranks over the next two years.

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Lanterns light up sky in Taiwan on last day of Lunar New Year | AFP

Hundreds of sky lanterns are released in New Taipei City to mark the final day of the Lunar New Year.

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Cruise ship allowed to dock in Taiwan amid virus outbreak | AFP

The SuperStar Aquarius carrying 1738 passengers including 1709 Taiwanese, was allowed to dock at Keelung Harbour Saturday despite a previous ban by Taiwanese authorities on port calls for all cruise liners. Passengers will have to pass health checks before disembarking. Health authorities have not ruled out mass quarantine on the ship if there are any confirmed cases of the coronavirus infection found among the passengers.

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Taiwan implements mask-rationing system amid Wuhan virus outbreak | AFP

Taiwan has implemented rationing for surgical face masks after the Wuhan coronavirus caused acute shortages. Two masks per person per week can be bought at government registered pharmacies across the island at a cost of NT$5 (US$0.16) each.

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Thousands stuck on cruise ship in Hong Kong after three passengers test positive for virus | AFP

Thousands on board a cruise ship that docked in Hong Kong are told they will not be allowed to disembark until medical check-ups are completed on board, after three recent passengers tested positive for the new coronavirus. The passengers on board ‘World Dream’ were denied entry to Taiwan on Tuesday after the test results were made known.

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