Sun, Nov 08, 2015 - Page 1 News List

Ma trumpets ‘one China,’ peace

‘1992 CONSENSUS’China’s Taiwan Affairs Office Minister Zhang Zhijun said that Beijing is willing to consider and discuss the issue of Taiwan’s international space as long as no perception of ‘two Chinas’ is created

By Huang Tai-lin  /  Staff reporter, in Singapore

Zhang quoted Xi as saying that “the forces seeking Taiwanese independence are the most real threat to cross-strait peace.”

Zhang said Xi agreed with Ma’s proposal to set up a cross-strait hotline, as it could help improve exchanges and dialogue.

Ma later told a separate press conference that he found Xi “pragmatic, flexible and frank.”

Ma said he hopes such a spirit could be reflected in the future handling of cross-strait matters.

During the meeting, Ma raised the issue of Taiwanese concern over China’s military deployment against Taiwan, he said.

According to Ma, Xi said that “the deployments do not target Taiwan.”

With regard to the “1992 consensus,” in response to reporters’ questions over Taiwan insisting that “one China” means the Republic of China, while Beijing emphasizes its “one China” principle, but intentionally ignores the latter part of the “consensus,” Ma said each side is free to interpret what “one China” means.

“That’s why some have said that [the ‘1992 consensus’] is a masterpiece of ambiguity,” Ma said.

Ma, who attended the closed-door meeting in the company of six other officials, said he found the summit helpful and positive, and reiterated that the purpose of the meeting with Xi was to take a first step toward paving a foundation so that a mechanism of institutionalized meetings between leaders from both sides of the Taiwan Strait could be established

From there, it can allow for the possibility of “super stable” cross-strait relations, he said.

Ma departed Singapore for Taiwan at 9pm on a charter flight after a dinner with Xi.

Later last night, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (李顯龍) posted a picture on Facebook of him having tea with Ma, adding: “Glad his meeting here went well. Hope this will lead to greater stability and prosperity for the region.”

Additional reporting by CNA

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