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County 金門 縣
Kinmen Montage.png
From top to bottom and left to right: View of Jincheng, Monument to the 100th Anniversary of the Republic of China, Quemoy National University, Ching-tien Hall, Jincheng Commandant from the Qing Dynasty , Archway in memory of the battle by Guningtou (1949), Mo Fan Street
coat of arms
State : TaiwanRepublic of China (Taiwan) Republic of China (Taiwan)
Coordinates : 24 ° 28 '  N , 118 ° 25'  E Coordinates: 24 ° 27 '34 "  N , 118 ° 24' 59"  E
Area : 151.656  km²
Residents : 137,456 (Dec 2017)
Population density : 906 inhabitants per km²
Time zone : UTC + 8 (Chungyuan time)
Telephone code : (+886) (0) 82, (0) 826
Postal code : 890-894, 896
ISO 3166-2 : TW-KIN
District capital : Jincheng ( 金 城鎮 )
Structure : 3 municipalities ( )
3 rural municipalities ( )
District Administrator: Chen, Fu-hai ( 陳福海 ) (independent)
Website :
Circle bird: hoopoe
Circle flower: Cymbidium ensifolium
Circle tree: Indian silk wool tree
Map of Taiwan, position of Kinmen county highlighted
Telephone booth on Kinmen with the stylized characters of the island's name 金門

Kinmen or Jinmen ( Chinese  金門  /  金门 , Pinyin Jīnmén , Zhuyin ㄐ ㄧ ㄣ ㄇ ㄣ ˊ  - "Golden Gate", obsolete according to the transcription system of the Chinese Post Quemoy ) is a group of islands about 2 km off the coast of mainland China's Fujian Province . The Kinmen Archipelago is largely identical to Kinmen County ( 金門 縣  /  金门 县 ), with the only difference that the latter also includes the small archipelago of Wuqiu .


The different Latin spellings of the name of the island group go back to the different transcription systems and their historical development . The official spelling is "Kinmen", while the spelling "Jinmen" is based on Hanyu Pinyin and the obsolete spelling "Quemoy", which is seldom found today, is derived from the historical transcription system of the Chinese Post Office .


The archipelago is opposite the port city of Xiamen (Amoy). It consists of the islands of Greater Quemoy ( 大 金門 , Dà Jīnmén ), Klein-Quemoy ( 小 金門 , Xiǎo Jīnmén ) and 13 other small islands.

Twelve of the islands, including the two main ones, are controlled by the Republic of China in Taiwan . A special feature is that Kinmen, like the Matsu Islands, is under the national Chinese provincial administration of Fujian . These two archipelagos are thus the last part of the area controlled by the Republic of China that does not belong to the Taiwan Province or the cities of Taiwan directly under the government .

The distance to the Penghu Islands ( Pescadors ) belonging to the Republic of China is about 150 km, to Kaohsiung on the main island of Taiwan 280 km. The islands are administered by the Republic of China as Kinmen County ( 金門 縣 , Jīnmén Xiàn ).

From the point of view of the PRC, which claims the entire archipelago, this is administratively regarded as Jinmen district of the district-free city of Quanzhou .

The land area of ​​all islands together amounts to 153.1 km², of which 151.6 km² is accounted for by the part controlled by the Republic of China.

Kinmen National Park , established in 1995, takes up almost a quarter of the land area .


毋忘在莒 - "Wú wàng zài Jǔ" - "Never forget our occupied land", a slogan alluding to the reconquest of mainland China , written by Chiang Kai-shek

In contrast to Taiwan and the Pescadors , Kinmen did not belong to Japanese rule between 1895 and 1945 , but remained part of the Empire as part of Fujian Province and from 1912 of the Republic of China.

After the Kuomintang troops had to flee from mainland China in 1949, they were able to hold the Kinmen Islands. On October 25, 1949, a first attack by the Chinese People's Liberation Army on Kinmen was successfully repulsed by the Kuomintang troops with American arms assistance, and Kinmen was then expanded into a fortress to defend Taiwan.

The second attack took place on September 3, 1954, this time as months of bombardment and artillery fire (so-called first "Quemoy crisis" or first Taiwan Strait crisis). In the course of this fighting, the three Dachen Islands north of the main island were lost to the People's Republic on February 8, 1955. They were evacuated with American naval aid. The remaining twelve islands, however, could be held by the Republic of China.

Four years later, on August 23, 1958, another 44-day bombardment of Kinmen by troops of the People's Republic of China began, during which 470,000 shells fired from the mainland struck (the second "Quemoy Crisis"). The attacks on Kinmen continued until the mid-1970s, when the People's Republic of China became a member of the United Nations (UN) and the Republic of China, a founding member of the UN, withdrew from the UN just before the vote to admit the PRC. Only then was the ongoing bombardment with rockets and grenades from mainland China stopped under pressure from the UN. However, the People's Republic of China continued to fire projectiles with propaganda material (leaflets) to Kinmen. This practice did not end until the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act came into force .

Due to the tense military strategic situation, the islands were placed completely under the control of the military in 1956. Any public activities such as elections did not take place and these did not take place again until 1971. As of 1980, county elected officials had the same powers as those in Taiwan Province . The terms of the martial law, which had been in force since 1949, were significantly more restrictive than on the main island of Taiwan. For example, the use of radios, cell phones and paper kites was banned because it was feared that they could send messages to the mainland. Basketballs were forbidden because they could have been used to help swim to the mainland. At night the islands always had to be completely darkened . The residents were organized into a self-defense militia and had to hold regular exercises. On the other hand, the economic life of the islands also benefited from the massive military presence and many islanders found their livelihood as employees or suppliers of the military or sold their products mainly to the military.

After martial law was abolished in Kinmen on November 7, 1992 - five years later than on the island of Taiwan - a pluralistic democratic life was able to develop on Kinmen as well.

Kinmen today

After decades of isolation as a restricted military area, Kinmen has been open to tourists again for several years. After Sung Shan (15 flights daily), Kaohsiung (6 daily flights), Taichung (9 flights a day), Chiayi (2 daily flights) and Tainan (two flights daily) with regular flights.

Parts of the two main islands were given special protection as the Kinmen National Park in 1995 . The scenic islands with their numerous houses in the typical Fujian style still show some traces of the war today. There are a few shot-up American tanks on the beaches. Entering many stretches of the beach is still forbidden, as there are numerous mines there, but these are to be completely removed soon. Weapons, airplanes, tanks (mainly of American origin) and knives and other utensils made from Chinese grenades can be viewed in several museums. The entire island is criss-crossed by underground canals and tunnels, some of which can be visited as part of touristic tours. The Chinese National Army had hidden its boats in these canals to repel an attack by China. A fully equipped hospital was built underground in the center of the main island.

As part of the “ Three Mini Links ” (post, transport and trade connection) there has been one of the two only permanent daily ferry connections between the Republic of China and the Chinese city of Xiamen (Amoy) since January 2, 2001 mainland china. The ferries leave from Kinmen and Xiamen ten times a day between 8:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. The second ferry connection is between the Matsu Islands further northeast and Mawei in Fujian Province on the Chinese mainland. Both ferry connections could initially only be used to a limited extent, i.e. by residents of the Chinese province of Fujian and Taiwanese, but not by foreigners. Foreigners are also allowed to use the ferries, provided they have a valid Chinese entry visa coming from Kinmen. In the 12,000 journeys between 2001 and 2008, around 1.4 million passengers, mostly Taiwanese business people, used the Kinmen-Xiamen ferry as the fastest connection between Taiwan and mainland China. However, this connection has lost some of its importance since direct flight connections between Taiwan and several cities in mainland China were launched on December 15, 2008. As a result, Kinmen is increasingly focusing on promoting tourism as the most important economic factor. Among other things, the opening of a casino will be discussed in this context.

The residents of the archipelago enjoy tax breaks. Kinmen's best-known product is the high-percentage Kaoliang liqueur made from millet (28, 38 and 58%). The allegorical “wind lions” that can be found everywhere are also characteristic of Kinmen. As a sign of improved relations between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait, the first Xiamen Kinmen Swimming Event was held on August 15, 2009, when 49 mainland swimmers and 48 Taiwanese swimmers swam from Xiamen to Kinmen.

cities and communes

Municipalities in Kinmen County

Kinmen County is divided into three municipalities ( , Zhèn) and three rural municipalities ( , Xiāng).

Surname Chinese Hanyu Pinyin Wade-Giles Tongyong Pinyin A [km²] Pop. A
3 municipalities - , Zhèn
Jincheng 金 城鎮 Jīnchéng Chin-ch'eng Jīnchéng 21,708 43,285
Jinhu 金 湖鎮 Jīnhú Chin-hu Jinhú 41,600 29,413
Jinsha 金沙 鎮 Jīnshā Chin-sha Jinsha 41.088 20,535
3 rural communities - , Xiāng
Jinning 金 寧鄉 Jīnníng Chin-ning Jinníng 29.854 30,838
Lieyu 烈 嶼 鄉 Lièyǔ Lie-yü Lièyǔ 14,851 12,700
Wuqiu 烏坵 鄉 Wūqiū Wu-ch'iu Wuciou 1,200 685
Kinmen County 金門 縣 Jīnmén Xiàn Chin 1 -mên 2 Hsien 4 Jinmén Siàn 151.656 137,456
Source table:
a Registration Office, Ministry of the Interior (MOI), ROC, as of December 2017

The four communities beginning with 金 ( Jīn , "gold") are located on the main island of Groß-Kinmen, Lieyu includes the island of Klein-Kinmen and smaller secondary islands. The municipality of Wuqiu is located a good 130 km northeast in the Formosa Strait , which is geographically not part of Kinmen, but is part of the Kinmen administrative district with the islands of Greater Qiu (大 坵) and Little Qiu (小坵). There is no direct transport link between Kinmen and Wuqiu.

Kinmen County symbols

The district has selected some plants and animals as official symbols. The Indian silk wool tree ( Bombax ceiba ) was declared the tree of the district . In its robustness and with its orange-red flowers, the tree symbolizes the perseverance of the Kinmen residents and their “prosperous future”. The district's flower was Cymbidium ensifolium , a species of orchid that is endemic to southern China and Taiwan and typical of Kinmen.

The emblem of the district is a swallowtail house gable in the style of the Fujian province . A stylized bat can be seen in the fork , which is considered a traditional Chinese symbol of harmony and peace. The surrounding circle indicated the shape of a lotus blossom . The emblem is supposed to symbolize, among other things, the tradition of the residents of Kinmen.

See also

Web links

Commons : Kinmen  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b 5.18 Location and Area of ​​Islands in Taiwan. In: Statistical Yearbook of Interior (2015 Yearly Bulletin of Interior Statistics). Retrieved on November 21, 2017 (English, the area measurements are based on the information provided by the Kinmen district government; slightly different figures are also used here, depending on whether measurements are taken at high or low water).
  2. ^ From Battleground to Bridge. Taiwan Today, March 1, 2008, accessed May 26, 2018 .
  3. ^ Kinmen awareness. Kinmen County, November 16, 2015, accessed May 26, 2018 .
  4. ^ " President Ma for the development of Kinmen " ( Memento from August 5, 2012 in the web archive ). In:, accessed July 22, 2019. (Chinese)
  5. 人口 資料 庫 快速 下載> 各 月 人口 資料 (括弧 內 為 資料 起始 年月)> 03 鄉鎮 戶數 及 人口 數 (9701) 03 Households and population by municipality (9701). December 2017, accessed January 13, 2018 (Chinese, English).
  6. ^ Tree of the County. (No longer available online.) Website of the district, October 14, 2015, archived from the original on January 21, 2018 ; accessed on January 20, 2018 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  7. ^ Flower of the County. (No longer available online.) Website of the district, October 14, 2015, archived from the original on January 21, 2018 ; accessed on January 20, 2018 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  8. ^ Emblem of the County. (No longer available online.) Website of the district, October 14, 2015, archived from the original on January 21, 2018 ; accessed on January 20, 2018 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /