Mon, May 06, 2019 - Page 1 News List

Counter-policy urged as China targets teachers

By Lee Hsin-fang and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

A copy of a letter distributed to teachers around Taiwan by the Taipei-based Sheen Chuen-chi Cultural and Educational Foundation, inviting them to participate in a “Zhonghua History and Culture Workshop” in China in July.

Photo: Lee Hsin-fang, Taipei Times

The Ministry of Education should have a standing policy and administrative measures to combat the increasingly severe cultural and literary “united front” tactics employed by China, a national security source said.

The pro-China Administration of Cultural Heritage and the Shaanxi Provincial Bureau of Cultural Heritage is commissioning the Taipei-based Sheen Chuen-chi Cultural and Educational Foundation to host a “Zhonghua History and Culture Workshop” in July, the source said, citing Mainland Affairs Council sources.

High-school teachers in the subjects of Mandarin and history would be invited to give talks at the workshop in China’s Shaanxi and Gansu provinces, with Beijing providing room, board and transportation, the council said.

While the commission is legal, it is nonetheless a move to influence high-school teachers with “united front” tactics, the source said.

The ministry should tell teachers that attending such events is not advised, as China has ulterior motives for covering their expenses, the source said.

These efforts are on the rise as restrictions for Chinese individuals coming to Taiwan grow stricter, while Taiwanese citizens going to China are relatively unhindered, due to freedom of movement as guaranteed by Taiwan’s democratic form of government, the source said.

The ministry should consider subsidizing academic-based travels or interaction to countries other than China, the source added.

The ministry should also adopt measures such as requiring all teachers to log a report to the ministry if they are going to China or disallowing teachers from taking a day off citing official business if they have accepted Chinese offers to pay for expenses, they said.

Taiwanese citizens must be aware that China will do everything in its power to attempt to subvert the nation’s sovereignty, particularly after the Chinese Communist Party issued Chinese President Xi Jinping’s (習近平) “five points” in January this year, the source said.

Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Lee Chun-hsien (李俊憲) on Saturday criticized the workshop as a cover for “united front” tactics as the administration is headed by Chinese National Cultural Heritage Administration Director Liu Yuzhu (劉玉珠).

The Sheen Chun-chi Cultural and Educational Foundation said the workshop aims to promote cross-strait interaction and the history of the “Zhonghua” people.

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