Wed, Mar 09, 2005 - Page 1 News List

Hsieh backs constitutional retaliation

UPPING THE ANTE China is still being coy on details of its 'anti-secession' law, but the premier said there was already enough known to justify a strong response

By Joy Su  /  STAFF REPORTER , WITH AGENCIES

Taiwanese officials lodged strong protests against the legislation, calling the proposed "anti-secession" law a "blank check for the military."

Rejection

The Mainland Affairs Council rejected Beijing's description of the "status quo," however, countering with its own description.

"The status quo across the Taiwan Strait is this: The Republic of China is a sovereign and independent country, and neither side of the Strait falls under the jurisdiction of the other," it said. "Taiwan is not a part of the People's Republic of China ... this is unacceptable," council Vice Chairman Chiu Tai-san (邱太三) told reporters yesterday.

"China admits that this bill will affect not only Taiwan, but also any foreigners residing in Taiwan as well," Chiu said, repeating the council's warning that the bill would destabilize the region.

Asked whether the government planned to take any concrete measures to counter Beijing's legislation, Chiu appealed to the international community for support.

"We have already lobbied the international community several times ... if China should implement measures that are unacceptable to the international community, then I think it will take moves to oppose China," he said.

The council rejected renewed requests from Beijing for Taiwan to accept the "one country, two systems" model, saying it was "illusory and degrading."

In Beijing, Wang said the law would ensure "the two sides may consult and negotiate on officially ending the state of hostility between the two sides, mapping out the development of cross-[strait] relations, steps and arrangements for a peaceful reunification, the political status of the Taiwan authorities, the Taiwan region's room for international operations that are compatible with its status."

The council responded by saying that efforts at improving cross-strait exchange and dialogue in the past five years would be obliterated.

Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) yesterday fired back by saying Taiwanese would tell the world of China's attempt to sabotage the status quo in the Taiwan Strait.

She urged the world to denounce China's actions and pressure it against enacting the law.

"Resolving disputes peacefully is a norm that the international community has adopted in the 21st century," Lu said, before attending the DPP's central standing committee yesterday.

"Any non-peaceful act that attempts to resolve a dispute violates international law and international norms," Lu said.

Japanese government spokesman Hiroyuki Hosoda said yesterday that Tokyo was concerned about China's "anti-secession" legislation.

"We do have concerns about the possibility that it will affect cross-strait relations," Hosoda told a press conference in Tokyo.

His comment followed objections on Sunday by Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing (李肇星) to "meddling" in China's affairs.

"Japan and the United States both want a peaceful resolution and we only reaffirmed that," Koizumi said.

The US stance on the legislation is that it will not be beneficial to cross-strait stability, said Victor Chin (秦日新), director-general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs's Department of North American Affairs, yesterday.

Government officials have exchanged opinions with their US counterparts on the legislation since late January and have expressed their concern about the eventual impact of the law on stability and peace in the Taiwan Strait and in the Asia-Pacific region, Chin said at a news conference.

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