Tue, Jan 11, 2005 - Page 8 News List

Letter

Support out of Africa

Communist China's legislature has begun deliberating on a proposed anti-secession law which to all intents and purposes is meant not only to obstruct Taiwan's growing friendship with the outside world, but also to prevent the formalization of Taiwan's independence and participation in the UN.

Africans United for Taiwan (AUT) wishes to strongly condemn this latest attempt by the communist regime in Beijing to unilaterally arbitrate on cross-strait issues and concoct a legal basis for military aggression and annexation. We firmly oppose these aggressive and intimidating activities against the 23 million peaceful and freedom-loving people of Taiwan.

The proposed anti-secession law is criminal and infringes upon peace, humanity and freedom. It is also a gross violation of the inalienable rights and democratic freedoms of the people of Taiwan, and a dangerous threat to security in the entire Asian region and beyond. Needless to say, the people of China have not been consulted on the matter.

The experience of the 1990s with the emergence of new Balkan states -- Macedonia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina -- and, of late, East Timor, as sovereign independent states and members of the UN speaks volumes. One thing is crystal clear from all of this, and that is when a people come together, say enough is enough and want to be left alone to create their future, no force on this earth can stand in their way.

Today, the 23 million people of Taiwan and their elected leaders clamor for a peaceful formalization of independence. They have shunned all acts of violence and have taken the civilized path to achieve their goal, which is realizing Taiwan's independence without resorting to the destruction of innocent lives and infrastructure -- unlike in the Balkans and East Timor.

It is in this context that Africa, and of course the rest of mankind, should lend support for Taiwan's admittance to the UN. Right-thinking members of the civilized international community must be quite intrigued by the UN's policy of political apartheid towards the people of Taiwan. It is embarrassing, disheartening, unsettling and totally unacceptable. The UN's silence on Taiwan must also be seen as a miscarriage of international justice and a betrayal of trust.

AUT is a staunch supporter of Taiwan's independence. In this respect, we call upon communist China to, first, act responsibly and refrain from all activities that undermine the peace, security and sovereignty of Taiwan. Second, China should cease promoting the illusion that Taiwan is part of communist China under "one country, two systems." Third, China should prepare for direct talks with the democratically elected authorities in Taiwan on the basis of mutual understanding and respect for sovereign rights.

We also call on the civilized world to exert pressure on communist China to end all plans for invasion and annexation, and instead help lay the foundations for peaceful co-existence with Taiwan.

We will continue to work with conscientious human-rights organizations, civic groups, Taiwan-solidarity organizations, political parties, religious bodies, the media, the African Union, regional groupings and legislatures across the continent in shaping the policies of governments to ensure that they are compatible with and supportive of the interests and aspirations of the 23 million people of Taiwan.

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