Mon, Aug 07, 2006 - Page 3 News List

MOFA won't confirm new strategy for UN bid


The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) kept mum yesterday on whether the government would adopt a new strategy this year to gain UN membership by applying under the name "Taiwan" instead of the "Republic of China [ROC]," "Chinese Taipei" or other titles.

Ministry Spokesman Michel Lu (呂慶龍) declined to comment on a cable television news report yesterday that Taiwan would embark on a new UN bid under the name of "Taiwan" and would submit the bid via Taiwanese authorities rather than through representatives of Taiwan's diplomatic allies, as has been the case over the last 13 years.

Lu only said that Minister of Foreign Affairs James Huang (黃志芳) will tell the country next week how the foreign ministry is striving to renew the UN bid by allowing the 23 million people of Taiwan to be represented.

John Chen (陳忠), director-general of the foreign ministry's Department of International Organizations, said several days ago that Taiwan would use the same strategies it has in the past.

In its failed bid last year, Taiwan called for the UN to help maintain peace in the Taiwan Strait and for the international body to pay attention to the representation of Taiwan's 23 million people at the UN.

This year, Chen said, Taiwan will call for the UN to play a more active role in maintaining peace in the Asia-Pacific region and again stress that representation for Taiwan in the world body was imperative.

President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) said on July 15 that Taiwan deserves a seat at the UN because joining international organizations is a basic right.

Taiwan has been shut out of the UN since 1971, when UN Resolution No. 2758 gave the China seat to Beijing at Taiwan's expense.

While Resolution No. 2758 resolved the issue of China's UN representation, the president said it did not address the representation of Taiwan's people.

"In terms of the principle of membership universality prescribed in the UN charter, Taiwan deserves a UN seat," the president said, adding that Taiwan's bid to accede to the UN is part of its effort to guard its people's basic human rights.

"Our right to participate in the United Nations and fulfill our international duties should not be kept from us or denigrated," he said. "We plan to expand our perspective by calling for UN attention to peace in the Asia Pacific region, which implies the need to maintain cross-strait stability."

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