Wed, Aug 08, 2007 - Page 3 News List

Event's organizers under fire for removing PRC flag

By Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTER

Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) yesterday criticized the organizers of an international convention for taking down China's national flag during a speech by President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁), saying that they could have used the opportunity to "normalize" relations between Taiwan and China.

"If the People's Republic of China is indeed a member [of the World Congress of Master Tailors], we should treat them as such. We must be neither haughty nor humble," she said. "When Beijing hosts an international event, we would expect them to treat us the same way and let us fly our national flag, play our national anthem and use our national title."

The event would have been a great opportunity to begin the nation's "normalization" process, Lu said.

The Chinese national flag was taken down when Chen delivered the opening speech at the World Congress of Master Tailors in Taipei on Monday.

As China is a member of the organization, its national flag, along with those from more than a dozen other countries, was hung at the venue in the International Convention Center.

The organizers removed the Chinese flag hanging in the conference hall where Chen delivered his speech. Security personnel also guided Chen so that he would avoid seeing another Chinese flag hanging over the escalators in the first-floor lobby as he was leaving the venue.

Organizers said they took down the flag because the Chinese representatives were visiting Sun Moon Lake in Nantou County and could not attend the opening ceremony.

The flag was put back up after Chen had left.

The organizers said they had been planning to play the Chinese national anthem at the event, but decided not to because the Chinese delegation had failed to provide them with a recording.

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