Fri, Sep 14, 2007 - Page 1 News List

Chen rebuts US' referendum criticism

INTERNATIONAL PROFILE The president said that sometimes Taiwan's interests do not coincide with those of the US and vice versa but he would work to find a consensus

By Ko Shu-ling and Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTERS

"Taiwan is an independent sovereign state, whose sovereignty belongs to the 23 million people of Taiwan not the 1.3 billion people of China," he said.

"Taiwan has the absolute right to join the United Nations and the international community should not be afraid of China because of its boycott and intimidation." Chen said.

Blaming China for Taiwan's political predicament, Chen said that the people of Taiwan have the final say on their country's future, but he did not see the prospect of unifying with China at the moment.

Meanwhile, Examination Yuan President Yao Chia-wen (姚嘉文) said yesterday that the US actually stopped recognizing the ROC and began calling the country "Taiwan" in 1979.

"Even their office in Taiwan is called the American Institute in Taiwan," he said. "I believe they were saying what they said for the Chinese government to hear ... Sometimes you have to read between the lines."

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) presidential candidate Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said yesterday that returning to the UN was the hope of the majority of Taiwanese people, and the KMT would continue pushing its UN referendum bid.

Ma said the KMT's proposal did not involve a change in the country's status quo.

"The DPP proposed the UN referendum in order to change the status quo and establish a new and independent country. The US knows the DPP's intention and that's why it criticized the DPP's referendum bid," he said in a statement.

The KMT said yesterday that its proposed referendum represented the people's desire for a stable society. It said it would not consider withdrawing its proposal unless the DPP dropped its version.

"The DPP provoked the UN referendum issue, and the issue won't be solved until the DPP drops its bid," Yang Tu (楊渡), commissioner of the KMT's culture and communication committee, said at party headquarters.

Yang called the DPP a "troublemaker," and said the KMT's referendum would provide an opportunity for the people to choose stability over risk and danger.

"If the problem produced by the troublemaker is not resolved, the threat and danger won't end and the US' attitude won't change," he said.

In related news, a delegation of more than 80 people was scheduled to leave for New York City yesterday to help promote Taiwan's UN bid ahead of Tuesday's opening of the annual UN General Assembly.

The delegation, organized by the Taiwan United Nations Alliance (TAIUNA), will take part in a rally outside UN headquarters tomorrow timed to coincide with a similar rally in Kaohsiung.

Chen Lung-chu (陳隆志) said organizers are expecting 2,000 people in New York and 500,000 in Kaohsiung City.

The delegation represents a cross-section of society, Lo said, and includes students, newlyweds, senior citizens and academics.

In New York, the members will distribute flyers promoting the UN bid and will try to make Americans understand Taiwan's situation and position with direct conversation on the streets, he said.

Additional reporting by Jimmy Chuang and CNA

This story has been viewed 5903 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top