Sat, Dec 24, 2011 - Page 1 News List

2012 ELECTIONS: Waiver shows US support for Ma: KMT

INTERFERENCE?The American Institute in Taiwan dismissed concerns that Taiwan’s nomination was meant to influence the election, but analysts said it had ‘connotations’

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  Staff Reporter

Joseph Wu (吳釗燮), a research fellow at the Institute of International Relations at National Chengchi University and the country’s former representative to the US in 2007 and 2008, disagreed, saying the US did not act inconsistently with its promise to maintain neutrality on Taiwan’s election.

“The AIT has said that the nomination has nothing to do with the election,” he said.

The efforts to push for the inclusion of Taiwan in the VWP stretch back to the end of 2007, with various rounds of talks held between high-ranking Taiwanese officials and their counterparts at the US Department of State, the US National Security Council and the US Department of Homeland Security before the DPP left office, Wu said.

Other than the talks, officials from both sides had inspected security and immigration facilities in the other side’s country and were close to completing negotiations on certain agreements needed to be signed to fulfill VWP requirements, he said.

Wu added that he had reservations about the comments made by Tung.

“In my view, the former DPP administration built a solid foundation,” Wu said.

“The nomination was actually a belated progress. Taiwan would have been nominated earlier if the KMT administration had worked harder,” he said.

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