Sun, Sep 26, 2004 - Page 3 News List

DPP's `absolute power' must be stopped: Lien

By Caroline Hong  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) does not support changing the country's national title from the Republic of China (ROC), KMT Chairman Lien Chan (連戰)said yesterday while pledging to work for a 30-year truce across the strait.

In his opening remarks at the KMT's 16th National Party Congress in Taipei, Lien clarified his party's stance on Taiwan's national title and policies on cross-strait relations -- a topic which has been a subject of heated debate since this summer's Athens Olympics. In a possible reference to differing national identities represented by the names "ROC" and "Taiwan," Lien said that the two names are one and the same.

At the conference, Lien also stressed the importance of the year-end legislative elections. The ruling party has too much power, Lien said, arguing that the pan-blue camp must win a majority in the Dec. 11 elections to uphold the government's principle of checks and balances. Lien also urged for an earlier rather than a later merger with its allies the People First Party (PFP) and the New Party. Changing the nation's name cannot change the nation's fate, Lien argued, while stressing that the "Republic of China" and "Taiwan" are inseparable and are mutually compatible.

"The Republic of China' is our country, and `Taiwan' is our motherland. When we talk of the Republic of China, of Taiwan, we feel proud of both. The two are united, they cannot be separated and they are not in opposition," Lien said.

"The Republic of China is the strongest guarantee [of safety and prosperity] for Taiwan," Lien said yesterday. He also criticized the Chen administration for escalating cross-strait tensions and creating the need for arms purchases with their calls to change Taiwan's national title.

"If you don't change the national title, then how would there be any cause for military action?" Lien said.

The KMT does not support the "one country, two systems" policy proposed by China, Lien said yesterday. However, in the interests of peace, the KMT's top three priorities for cross-strait relations are: maintaining the status quo while opposing the one country, two systems policy; entering talks with China on mutual issues such as business matters; and negotiating on a "peer-to-peer" basis with China to push for a 30-year-plus peace pact, Lien said.

At the conference, Lien also leveled heavy criticism at the ruling party, saying that the Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) efforts to dominate all government bodies must be stopped.

A monopoly by the DPP must be prevented to save Taiwan's future, Lien said. Speaking on the conference's theme: "Only by choosing the right path will Taiwan have a future," Lien reiterated the KMT's accusations against the Chen administration and the DPP about the presidential election.

The March election is indicative of the DPP's efforts to gain complete control of the government, Lien said.

"The DPP's goal of absolute power means absolute corruption. It means an absolute end for Taiwan's future," Lien said.

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