Mon, Sep 24, 2018 - Page 1 News List

Expatriates rally in NYC for UN membership

Staff writer, with CNA, NEW YORK

Taiwanese expatriates and other demonstrators promoting Taiwan’s membership in the UN cross Times Square in New York City on Saturday.

Photo: CNA

Taiwanese lawmakers and hundreds of Taiwanese expatriates on Saturday marched in New York City to promote Taiwan’s membership in the UN.

The march followed the opening on Tuesday of the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly, and ahead of the start of the annual general debate, which begins tomorrow and runs through Monday next week.

People from expatriate communities in New York City, Boston and Washington started the 3.2km-long march across the street from the office building housing the Chinese Consulate-General and headed toward Dag Hammarskjold Plaza in front of the UN headquarters.

New Power Party Legislator Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明), who has participated twice in similar marches promoting UN membership for Taiwan, said China has spared no effort to squeeze Taiwan’s international space and has used its influence to keep the nation out of the world body.

Taiwan will be able to join the UN one day if the nation’s younger generations continue to demand participation in the organization, he said.

Many of the marchers carried flags and banners with slogans supporting Taiwan’s desire to join the UN and expressing opposition to China’s suppression.

Led by Hsu and Democratic Progressive Party legislators Lin Ching-yi (林靜儀), Lee Li-feng (李麗芬) and Chen Man-li (陳曼麗), the march passed several New York City landmarks, including Times Square, Grand Central Station and the Chrysler Building.

The marchers shouted slogans, including “Keep Taiwan Free,” “UN for Taiwan” and “Taiwan is Taiwan,” that drew support from onlookers.

The march finished in about 90 minutes, according to event organizer “Keep Taiwan Free,” which put the march’s turnout at about 500.

Because of China’s influence, not only has Taiwan been kept out of the world body, but Republic of China passport holders are not allowed to enter UN headquarters, which the lawmakers said was unfair to Taiwan.

They called on the UN and the international community to support Taiwan, which upholds the values of human rights and democracy, and live up to their commitment as part of the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to leave no one behind.

Participation in the UN system is a long-standing goal that the government and the public have worked for as part of Taiwan’s desire to become a constructive member of the international community, Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in New York Director-General Hsu Li-wen (徐儷文) said.

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