Sun, Apr 12, 2009 - Page 1 News List

Tsai pans Ma over ECFA

PROTECT THE NATIONDPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen said that President Ma Ying-jeou's mind was constantly lingering on thoughts of a motherland in a distant place

By Rich Chang and Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTERS

DPP headquarters turned down the invitation to meet at a memorial service marking the 100th anniversary of the birth of president Chiang Ching-kuo (蔣經國), saying that Ma has turned the memorial service into a promotional event for himself and that it would be inappropriate for Tsai to meet Ma for discussions in that context.

The DPP, meanwhile, extended an invitation to Ma to attend yesterday’s State Affairs Forum.

While the DPP made public the content of Tsai’s letter before Ma received it on Friday night, Wang yesterday declined to say whether such a move was disrespectful.

However, he said that they had not revealed the contents of Ma’s letter in advance out of respect.

Talks about a meeting between Ma and Tsai have been in the air for a while, but Ma and Tsai have not been able to agree on an agenda or the format of any discussion. While Tsai prefers an open debate, she told Ma in her letter that their meeting would be pointless if Ma just wanted to exchange greetings.

Wang yesterday said it was “unfair” and “incorrect” to make such an assumption. Ma would be more than happy to meet Tsai if she thought the time was right, Wang said.

Wang said Ma told Tsai in the invitation that he was sincere about the meeting and that he was open to the time and issue and that the meeting would be open to the public.

Responding to Tsai’s criticism of Ma’s worship of the Yen Emperor, Wang said it was common practice in the central government and that Ma attended this year to show his sincerity.

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