China should think about following the global trend and implement systemic reform that would result in long-term security, democratic freedom, human rights and the rule of law, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said yesterday.
The council issued the statement after China’s National People’s Congress yesterday ratified a constitutional amendment that abolishes presidential term limits, thereby enabling Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) to rule indefinitely.
Saying it has yet to see a system of checks, balances and systematized guidelines to accompany the change, the council said that Taiwan’s government would continue to monitor China’s activity, and would carefully evaluate and respond to the situation.
Xi is likely to seek stability in cross-strait and foreign relations in his second term, but in the medium to long-term, considering his desire to fulfill the “Chinese dream,” a unification timetable might be revealed, Cross-Strait Policy Association secretary-general Wang Chih-sheng (王智盛) said.
However, in a third term, Xi would likely put greater pressure on Taiwan, so Taiwan must strengthen itself and accumulate “bargaining chips” now, Wang said.
The most important task is to ensure the cohesion and integration of opinions within Taiwan, he added.
Xi’s indefinite retention of power would affect the entire world, National Chengchi University Graduate Institute of East Asian Studies chairman Wang Hsin-hsien (王信賢) said.
The behavior of some democratic nations in recent years has made many people think that democracy has failed, he said, adding that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which has always been good at promotion, seized this opportunity and secured its power through a constitutional amendment.
“The leadership of the CCP is the most essential characteristic of China’s socialism with Chinese characteristics” was added to Article 1 of the Chinese constitution, he said.
This suggests that anyone who opposes the CCP is opposing the nation, he said, adding that the party could claim it is governing according to the constitution.
Former deputy minister of defense and former MAC deputy minister Lin Chung-pin (林中斌) said that Xi is now likely to increase the number of “soft” measures aimed at Taiwan in a bid to win the hearts of more Taiwanese.
SCHEDULE: The delegation is due to meet with President Tsai Ing-wen this morning and witness the signing of an MOU on bilateral health cooperation in the afternoon US Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Alex Azar yesterday arrived in Taipei aboard a US government plane at the head of a delegation that is the highest-level visit by a US official since Washington switched diplomatic recognition to China in 1979. Azar’s flight landed at Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) at 4:48pm, nearly one hour earlier than scheduled, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. The apron where it landed is reserved for military aircraft, the Songshan Air Force Base Command said. The members of Azar’s delegation included HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Robert Kadlec, HHS Chief of Staff Brian
CHINESE FIGHTERS: Beijing marked the US Cabinet member’s visit by briefly sending two warplanes across the median line of the Taiwan Strait yesterday morning President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday met with US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar in the highest-level official meeting between the two nations since 1979. “It is a true honor to be here to convey a message of strong support and friendship from [US] President [Donald] Trump to Taiwan,” Azar said during the open portion of his courtesy call to the Presidential Office, which was streamed live online before Tsai and Azar held a closed-door meeting. “Taiwan’s response to COVID-19 has been among the most successful in the world, and that is a tribute to the open, transparent,
PARTNERSHIP AND LEARNING: A Princeton University health policy researcher said that the nation would be a ‘treasure trove’ of information for the US health chief US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar on Friday said he wants to learn about Taiwan’s “incredibly effective” response to COVID-19, even though the nation did things that the US has fumbled, such as having a unified strategy and citizens willing to wear masks. Azar leads a US delegation arriving today for a three-day visit to Taiwan. They are to meet with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and health system leaders, and Azar is to give a speech to public health graduates. “The message of this trip is about Taiwan,” Azar said in an interview, deflecting a question about China.
Taiwanese-independence advocates yesterday accused former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) of breaking national security laws and called on the judiciary to investigate after his statement that “China will wage a battle, which will be quick and will be the last battle for Taiwan.” Ma showed his true colors “as a mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party” in his speech on Monday when he said the “first battle will be the last,” Taiwan Republic Office (台灣國辦公室) director Chilly Chen (陳峻涵) said. “Ma is threatening Taiwanese by claiming that Beijing will launch a quick invasion of Taiwan, but that the US military will have no