Wed, Oct 01, 2003 - Page 3 News List

Soong in Seoul to plug `pan-blue' ticket's campaign

CNA , TAIPEI

People First Party (PFP) Chair-man James Soong (宋楚瑜) left for Seoul yesterday to meet with South Korean political leaders and business executives as part of the "pan-blue" alliance's presidential campaign activities.

Soong, who is Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Lien Chan's (連戰) running mate, said prior to his departure that the pan-blue alliance will campaign on a platform characterized by "five yeses" in contrast to President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) "Five No's" pledge of the 2000 election.

"We'll put forward a campaign platform that advocates `five yeses': Taiwan's status quo must be maintained, the two sides of the Taiwan Strait must co-exist peacefully, the people of Taiwan must have the final say on Taiwan's destiny, Taiwan's liberal, democratic lifestyle can never be compromised and its stability and prosperity must be sustained," he said.

Soong refrained from commenting directly on Chen's plan for a new Constitution in 2006, saying that he refused to comment on the Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) campaign rhetoric.

Soong reminded the DPP that among Chen's "Five No's" were that he would not declare independence, would not seek to change the nation's name and would not promote a referendum that would change Taiwan's status quo.

Soong said he felt apprehension when he heard of Chen's comments about pushing for a new Constitution.

Soong said that as a national leader Chen should not have addressed such a critical issue in such a cavalier manner.

"Chen's overture only reflects the DPP's unrefined policy-making process," he said.

Soong said that during his trip he will brief South Korean politicians and business leaders on Taiwan's situation and the alliance's campaign platform.

"The visit is part of my good-neighbor drive aimed at helping our foreign friends understand the `pan-blue' alliance's basic policy lines and stances on a number of critical issues, including regional security and Taiwan's internal reforms," Soong said.

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