• Austria's news in English

Beauty contestant barred over 'Taiwan' sash

The Local/AFP · 25 Nov 2015, 08:45

Published: 25 Nov 2015 08:45 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Ting Wen-yin was kept out of the Miss Earth contest in Austria because she refused to compete for "Chinese Taipei" - the name by which Beijing insists the self-ruled island should be known.

Ting, 22, said pageant organisers had initially given her a "Taiwan ROC" sash - short for "Republic of China", the territory's preferred name - but later said there had been a mistake.

When she declined to wear the replacement ribbon, she was told to "just leave" and barred from the stage over the weekend.

"It seems some department from China had reported it, then the organisers told me to replace it with Chinese Taipei at the evening event," Ting wrote on Facebook.

Taiwan and China separated in 1949 after a civil war, and despite more than six decades of self-rule, Beijing insists the island is a renegade province awaiting reunification.

Both governments insist they are the legitimate rulers of greater China.

Taiwan participates in international events as Chinese Taipei, the name of its capital, instead of Republic of China (ROC) to skirt mainland sensitiveness.

Ting said her stance stemmed from not wanting her home to be "humiliated", at a time when Taiwanese are growing wary of expanding Chinese influence.

"On the map, Taiwan is Taiwan. All the nations enter using their country names, while we use the name of a city," said Ting.

Taiwanese foreign ministry spokeswoman Eleanor Wang said in a statement the "Chinese Taipei" sash had been replaced because of pressure from China.

Story continues below…

The Miss Earth pageant - whose finals are on December 5 - bills itself as an event promoting environmental awareness, and says the winner serves as an ambassador for campaigns.

The furore comes just weeks after a historic summit between Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou and Chinese leader Xi Jinping in Singapore, the first meeting between leaders since the 1949 split.

It also comes after Canada's Chinese-born Miss World contestant claimed she was being denied a visa to compete in this year's finals in China because of her criticism of Beijing's human rights record.

For more news from Austria, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local/AFP (news.austria@thelocal.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Today's headlines
Radioactive uranium rocks on display in Austrian schools
Uraninite crystals. Photo: Rob Lavinsky, iRocks.com/Wikimedia

Education officials have carried out urgent checks in schools across the country after one of the stones on display in a classroom turned out to be radioactive.

Austrian churches slam far-right's 'God' slogan
Campaign poster for Norbert Hofer. Photo: Paul Gillingwater

Austrian church officials have denounced far-right presidential candidate Norbert Hofer for "instrumentalising" God in a new slogan.

'Scary clown' pushes 14-year-old off his bike in Salzburg
Generic photo: Graeme Maclean/Flick

A 14-year-old boy in Salzburg has been injured after being pushed off his bike by an individual dressed as a scary clown.

Police puzzled by random stabbing of teenager in Vienna
Photo: Paul Gillingwater

A 15-year-old boy who was stabbed near his home in the Vienna district of Liesing on Friday morning by a complete stranger has spoken to the police.

'Sensational' 300-year-old Madonna found in Burgenland
The head of the statue was found beside the body. Photo: ORF

A 300-year-old statue of the Virgin Mary has been found hidden in a chapel next to a Catholic church in Loretto, Burgenland.

Baumgartner 'failed to mention Red Bull' before jumping to Earth
Felix Baumgartner. Photo: Red Bull Stratos

Felix Baumgartner has been accused of cheating his Red Bull sponsors after he failed to mention the energy drink just before he jumped to Earth.

Verdict on swimming pool rape case overturned
The Theresienbad swimming pool in Vienna. Photo: Wikimedia

An Iraqi refugee who was jailed after claiming it was a sexual emergency when he raped a boy in a swimming pool has had the sentence overturned.

Vienna Comic Con promises to be 'bigger and more galactic'
Cosplay star Yaya Han. Copyright: Yaya Han/Bryan Humphrey

Comic Con returns to the Austrian capital on November 19th-20th at the Messe Wien.

Three refugees arrested on drugs charges
Cannabis plants. Photo: J. Patrick Bedell/Wikimedia

A gang of three Afghani drug dealers has been busted in Vienna.

Hungarian woman crushed by snowcat piste machine
Snowcat machine. Photo: Melensdad/Wikimedia

A young Hungarian woman has died after being crushed by a snowcat piste machine on the Dobratsch mountain in Carinthia.

12 brilliant German words you won't find in English
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Five films which will change your mind about Austrian cinema
Those surprising Austrians!
100 years since the last emperor's death
Afghani family's new home in Austria
Der you learn Deutsch?
Delighted by the light
Beware these passport scams
Of course we skipped Oarsch
Foodies rejoice at the choice!
Travel & Tourism
10 years after her escape from captivity
Surviving the Brexit for British expats
Day 2 of the World Bodypainting Festival 2016
Is Islam hostile to Western society?
Bodypainting festival in southern Austria
Europe's ice cream capital
Best Austrian beauty spots
Travel & Tourism
Three days in Vienna as a tourist
How to make friends in Austria
jobs available