Fri, Mar 04, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Urgent action needed to oppose China's legislative ambitions, academics stress

By Rich Chang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Officials and academics yesterday criticized the government and the legislature for taking too passive a position on China's proposed "anti-secession" law.

Mainland Affairs Council Vice Chairman David Huang (黃偉峰), and Yan Jiann-fa (顏建發), the vice chairman of the Foreign Ministry's Research and Planning Committee, shared their concerns with academics at an "`anti-secession' law and cross-strait relations" seminar held by Institute for National Policy Research.

"How could Taiwan survive if China enacts such an aggressive law if the country doesn't even dare to resist it?" Yan said, adding Beijing would cross a "red line" if it enacts the proposed law.

If Taiwan did not strongly respond, China will become the only voice to the international community on cross-strait issues, he said.

Lin Cheng-yi (林正義), director of the Institute of International Relations at National Chengchi University, echoed Yan's words by saying it was a shame that President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and People First Party Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) did not firmly oppose the proposed "anti-secession" law in their 10-point consensus.

For its part, the legislature also failed to quickly and decisively propose a resolution in opposition to the proposed law, Lin said.

Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明), an assistant researcher at Academia Sinica's Humanities and Social Sciences department, said he did not see China scoring any points in Taiwan or the international community from the proposed anti-secession law, except for a vague attitude toward the law adopted by pan-blue opposition leaders.

Hsu said internationally, the proposed law might have prompted the US and Japan to declare the Taiwan Strait a "common strategic objective."

In addition, US and Japanese politicians have urged their governments to take firm opposition toward China's proposed law.

In Taiwan, over 70 percent of people surveyed in two recent polls oppose such a law -- irrespective of political bias.

However, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Lien Chan (連戰) and Soong remain ambivalent on the issue, Hsu said.

As a result, Chinese authorities may consider the enactment of the anti-secession law as being supported by pan-blue voters, and also consider it successful in terms of further dividing the Taiwanese people.

Hsu said to prevent Beijing form taking advantage the law, Lien and Soong must swiftly voice their opposition to the law.

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