Taiwan seeks return of army officer from UK

December 20, 2013 - 10:06:26 am
TAIPEI:  Taiwan plans to bring home from Britain a young military intelligence officer after she failed to return to the island last year, officials and media said yesterday.

Yeh Mei, a lieutenant with Taiwan’s Military Intelligence Agency, took an overseas sightseeing trip in June last year but for unknown reasons did not return for duty, and was placed on a wanted list by a local court.

Yeh was detained by the UK Border Agency for overstaying her visa and her attempt to extend it was rejected.  The Central News Agency added that she has been sent to an immigration removal centre.

“We’re working together with the foreign ministry to escort her back to Taiwan,” defence ministry spokesman David Lo said.

Taiwan and Britain have no diplomatic ties or extradition treaty. Lo said China had not played any role in Yeh’s movements.

“Some local media had said she defected to the Chinese mainland, which was not true. The Military Intelligence Agency attributed her move to ‘personal factors’,” Lo said.

China still claims Taiwan as part of its territory awaiting reunification, by force if necessary, even though the two sides have been governed separately since the end of a civil war in 1949.

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