Mon, Mar 20, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Democracy comes first: DPP chairman

DEFIANT MESSAGE DPP Chairman Yu Shyi-kun said the people of Taiwan would never give up on freedom and democracy, regardless of the threats from China

CNA , TAIPEI

Democratic Progressive Party Chairman Yu Shyi-kun gives the opening speech at a seminar held yesterday in Taipei to mark the 10th anniversary of the 1996 Taiwan Strait crisis and the first anniversary of China's ``Anti-Secession'' Law.

PHOTO: CHU PEI-HSIUNG, TAIPEI TIMES

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) insists that Taiwan's future should be decided by the people of the country, DPP Chairman Yu Shyi-kun said yesterday.

Yu made the remarks while addressing an international seminar held in Taipei to mark the 10th anniversary of the 1996 Taiwan Strait crisis and China's enactment of its "Anti-Secession" Law targeting Taiwan a year ago.

Noting that March is a month with special significance for the people of Taiwan as it has in the past been a month of crises, Yu said that China test-fired missiles into waters near Taiwan prior to the country's first direct presidential election in March 1996 to try to intimidate the nation's electorate, and enacted the Anti-Secession Law on March 14 last year to codify its use of force against Taiwan.

Noting that the people of Taiwan will never yield to any country's bullying or unilateral decision on the nation's future, Yu said that despite constant political and economic pressure from China, the people here have never renounced their insistence on democratic processes and values.

"Deepening democracy is the Taiwanese people's choice, although it is a painstaking task," Yu said, adding that the nation has been faced with China's increasing military threat during the process of its democratic development.

However, after years of concerted effort by the government and the people, Taiwan has won the international community's acclaim for its impressive democratic achievements, he said.

"Taiwan is willing to help boost China's democracy through democratic exchanges and talks, in an attempt to create a new climate favorable for stable development and peace in the Asia-Pacific area," Yu said.

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