Countries around the world continue to express their condolences and support following the Hualien earthquake, and Presidential Office Spokesperson Huang Chung-yen (黃重諺) once again expressed Taiwan's heartfelt appreciation for these gestures of goodwill at a regular press conference on February 8.
Spokesperson Huang said that governments expressing condolences to date include the United States, Japan, Singapore, Australia, Belize, Canada, mainland China, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, France, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Poland, Saint Christopher and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and Vietnam, as well as the European Union. Pope Francis and Tibetan religious leader the Dalai Lama also reached out to convey their sympathies for the victims, and blessings for the people of Taiwan.
Governments including the United States, Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, Canada, as well as the European Union also expressed their willingness to provide all possible personnel and material assistance. And on behalf of the US government, American Institute in Taiwan Taipei Office Director Kin Moy also sent best regards to President Tsai Ing-wen. Spokesperson Huang expressed Taiwan's deepest gratitude for the international community's warm concern and support.
Today, Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe sent a letter to President Tsai to convey his condolences. Earlier in the day, a team of seven experts from Japan armed with cutting-edge equipment for detecting signs of life arrived in Taiwan to help the search for survivors who might be trapped in a collapsed building. Spokesperson Huang also expressed sincere appreciation for these gestures, saying that adversity is the truest test of friendship. At this difficult time, this kind of humanitarian aid exemplifies the friendship and values that Taiwan and Japan cherish.