Mon, Dec 25, 2006 - Page 3 News List

DPP Young Turks join worldwide liberal group

INTERNATIONAL TIES The Taiwan Young Democratic Union offers young people a chance to take part in public affairs and hopes to promote the nation's interests

By Flora Wang and Jewel Huang  /  STAFF REPORTERS

A group composed of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Young Turks was accepted as a member by the International Federation of Liberal Youth earlier this month, the party's Youth Department said yesterday.

The Taiwan Young Democratic Union was founded in September to offer a platform for youngsters to participate in public affairs and pursue public policies and legislation which serve justice.

The group was recognized as a "youth wing" member at the annual convention of the federation held in Andorra, Deputy Director of the DPP's Youth Development Department Chou Yung-hong (周永鴻) said.

The federation, a sub-organization of Liberal International, a global organization consisting of liberal-oriented political parties.

Chou said that the department will go into college campuses and hold conferences or forums to address the importance of young people's international participation as well as national identity.

"Taiwan, with its special international status, should enhance nonofficial diplomatic channels to promote itself. I think starting with the appeal of common values is a good way to link Taiwan with other countries," Chou said.

Chou said he found young Europeans generally show a high level of concern about international affairs, unlike young Taiwanese.

"Young people in Taiwan seem to be lukewarm to what is happening in the world. I think it is a problem for the younger generation to comprehend the complicated relations between Taiwan and China without a global view," Chou said.

"It is not easy to fully understand cross-strait affairs or regional conflicts in the Asia-Pacific area if we don't see them from a global strategic perspective," Chou said.

Chou, who represented the party's Youth Department and the union at the convention, said members of the federation showed their concern at the event about how to help Taiwan join the international community while China obstructs the nation's diplomatic ties.

He also urged federation members to pay close attention to the threat to human rights and security in the Asia-Pacific region brought by China's rising power.

He said attendees agreed admission to international organizations should not be limited to areas holding statehood but should be granted taking human rights into consideration, adding that they would communicate the idea to members of Liberal International.

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