Tue, Jun 05, 2018 - Page 8 News List

Laws must be tightened as China plays dirty

By Lau Yi-te 劉一德

In an article published earlier this year, June Teufel Dreyer, a senior fellow at the US-based Foreign Policy Research Institute, said that Wang Huning (王滬寧), a member of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) politburo, in 2005 proposed establishing a social democratic party in Taiwan.

This party was to have ties with the CCP, and become the ruling party in Taiwan to use Taiwanese democracy against itself.

Taiwan’s legal system is not yet up to the task of safeguarding the nation’s interests against China’s “united front” and infiltration tactics or pro-China groups and individuals within Taiwan.

The Chinese flag is allowed to fly freely in Taiwan, thanks to the freedom of expression laws here. Police have their hands tied on this, not to mention when dealing with pro-China organizations that would sell Taiwan out.

The enactment of anti-“united front” and anti-infiltration legislation is of utmost importance.

Ever since the Cold War, the US has had stringent national security legislation in place.

Anyone traveling to a potentially hostile country, such as Russia, be they government officials, members of the US Congress or private citizens, and regardless of the purpose of their trip, would on their return be debriefed. They would have to give a detailed account of the nature of their activities and the background of the people they came into contact with during their stay — especially if they are regarded as anti-US activists. If they lie they could face punishment.

The German criminal code stipulates that anyone who domestically distributes or publicly uses, produces, stocks, imports or exports, in public or in an assembly, symbols of organizations — including flags, insignia, uniforms and their parts, slogans and forms of greeting — deemed by the German Federal Constitutional Court as illegal is liable to imprisonment not exceeding three years, or a fine.

Anyone approving of national socialist (Nazi) actions, or denying Nazi crimes, can be sentenced to three months to five years in prison for incitement.

Suspicions have been raised over a former premier of an Australian state and his shady ties with the Chinese communists. He is said to have been working in China’s interest. It was revealed that he asked an Australian senator to question the government about the credentials of an official writing a confidential report on China’s attempts to interfere with and influence Australian politics. He now faces legal action and calls for expulsion from his party.

A report published in 2016 in Australia said that Chinese interference in Australian politics has been going on for a decade, obliging Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to back legislation to counter espionage and foreign interference.

Even powerful nations, such as the US, Germany and Australia, need comprehensive and robust legislation to safeguard their national security. Taiwan is constantly under Chinese threat and must protect itself against Beijing’s “united front” tactics and infiltration attempts: How much more so does Taiwan need robust legislation to counter that threat?

The National Security Act (國家安全法) and Criminal Code do not grant the government enough power to counter the actions of Beijing and its affiliate organizations in Taiwan.

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) should make it known that her government will have zero tolerance for such infiltration by introducing more comprehensive legislation to counter the threat.

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