Sat, Mar 09, 2002 - Page 3 News List

Annette Lu hopes to attend political meet in Hungary

By Monique Chu  /  STAFF REPORTER , WITH AGENCIES

Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) hopes to travel to Hungary later this month to attend a global political convention, although whether she can make it remains up in the air, sources said yesterday.

"It remains uncertain whether I will travel to Budapest. I am still making an overall evaluation," Lu said during an inspection tour of the Hsinchu Science-based Industrial Park.

London-based Liberal International, a coalition of political parties from more than 60 countries, has invited the DPP to attend its annual congress in Hungary from March 21 to March 23, sources said.

"We've invited the DPP to the meeting because the DPP is a member of the Liberal International. The party can decide whom it will send," Federica Sabbati, Liberal International's program officer and secretary-general elect, told the Taipei Times in a telephone interview.

"But no specific invitation is made to Annette Lu," Sabbati added. "But of course she is invited as she is a member of the DPP."

Defining the meeting as "exchanges among political parties," Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokes-person Katharine Chang (張小月) said the ministry would do its best to realize the vice president's trip to Budapest.

But Chang said Lu's visit has yet to be finalized and is still subject to receiving a visa from the Hungarian government.

Chang also said that if Lu made it to Budapest, she would be going there as a member of the DPP rather than in her capacity as the vice president of Taiwan.

Lu's name is not listed on the congress' draft program posted on Liberal International's Web site.

DPP Vice Secretary-General You Ying-lung (游盈隆) is to lead a delegation to the meeting. The delegation includes DPP legislator Hsiao Bi-khim (蕭美琴) and Wilson Tien (田欣), director of the DPP's department of international affairs, Tien said.

Tien noted that Lu's attempt to attend Liberal International's annual congress in Canada in 2000 was thwarted.

At the sidelines of the congress, the DPP delegation plans to showcase Taiwan's democratization as well as the historical evolution of the DPP, Tien said.

The delegation, scheduled to depart on March 19, is also to travel to Poland and Germany to meet with like-minded European political parties, Tien added.

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