Wed, Aug 21, 2019 - Page 1 News List

HK proves ‘two systems’ model a failure, Tsai says

IRRECONCILABLE:Democracy and authoritarianism cannot coexist, the president said, warning the world about Beijing’s military buildup and expansionism

By Lin Chia-nan  /  Staff reporter

President Tsai Ing-wen speaks at the 2019 Asia-Pacific Security Dialogue in Taipei yesterday.

Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times

The protests in Hong Kong are proof that China’s “one country, two systems” model does not work, because authoritarianism and democracy cannot coexist, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) told a security forum in Taipei yesterday, alerting the world to Chinese expansionism.

While Taiwan promotes sustainable and joint development projects with its partners, Chinese military expansionism has sparked concern in many countries, Tsai said at the 2019 Asia-Pacific Security Dialogue, citing Beijing’s aggressive claims over territory and its military buildup in the South China Sea.

China has not given up its ambition to annex Taiwan by force or impose its “one country, two systems” model on the nation, despite the model’s failure in Hong Kong, the president said.

Taiwan has been developing its own aircraft and submarines, with its first domestically developed training aircraft model to be finished in the second half of next month, she said, while thanking US President Donald Trump’s administration for its four previous arms sales to Taiwan.

Trump on Sunday said he had approved another US$8 billion package for the sale of 66 upgraded F-16V jets to Taiwan.

The Ministry of National Defense on Monday said it hoped the US Congress would approve the deal as soon as possible to benefit peace and security in the Taiwan Strait and the Asia-Pacific region as a whole.

Former Australian minister for defense Christopher Pyne — who resigned in May and is visiting Taiwan for the first time — also warned of China’s increasing militarization in the South China Sea and talked of Australia’s continuous investment in defense and telecommunications facilities.

Asked about a report released on Monday by the US Studies Centre at the University of Sydney that said the US military is losing its primacy in the Pacific, Pyne said he has not yet read the report, but that it would be an exaggeration to say that the US is losing its primacy.

“You need to remember that one of every two dollars in the world that is spent on defense is being spent by the United States,” which continues investing in the area and related alliances, he said.

The US also has many allies and partners, including Taiwan, Japan and South Korea across the Pacific, he said.

“Now the world is watching Hong Kong,” where the protests are being driven by demands for freedom, liberty and respect for the rule of law, he said.

Pyne said that he does not think China would move against Hong Kong like it did on Tiananmen Square in 1989, given its increasing engagement in global economy and diplomacy.

How Beijing reacts to the protests would send a message across the region, he said.

Taiwanese, living in a different place from the territory, would also see what “one country, two systems” actually means, Pyne added.

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