Thu, Aug 16, 2007 - Page 3 News List

DPP urges defensive referendum

RED TAPE After Thailand and Vietnam denied visas for party Chairman Yu Shyi-kun last week, relations should be reexamined, DPP Secretary-General Lin Chia-lung said

By Flora Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) Central Standing Committee yesterday urged President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) to launch a defensive referendum if China attempted to file a UN resolution to establish sovereignty over Taiwan.

The committee said in a statement that a defensive referendum should be proposed at "a suitable time" to "explicitly express the will of Taiwanese people" should China proceed with the UN resolution.

"If such a resolution were passed, Taiwan would never be able to join any international organizations. The issue of Taiwan would become China's `internal problem.' Such a resolution would cause unprecedented harm to Taiwan," the committee said.

The defensive referendum proposal was initiated by committee member Chai Trong-rong (蔡同榮) and endorsed by eight committee members, including DPP Chairman Yu Shyi-kun, DPP caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) and former vice premier Yeh Chu-lan (葉菊蘭).

The committee also passed a resolution to urge the government to reevaluate its economic, diplomatic and cultural cooperation with Thailand and Vietnam.

DPP Secretary-General Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) said at a press conference after the committee meeting that the reevaluation was necessary because Thailand and Vietnam refused to issue visas to Yu under pressure from China during Yu's trip to Southeast Asia last week.

The reevaluation could result in reducing or halting the ability of laborers from Thailand and Vietnam to work in Taiwan, Lin said.

"These two countries have made a lot of profits through economic and cultural exchanges with Taiwan," Lin said, adding that the party considered their denial of visas to Yu a serious matter.

The committee also resolved to urge the Cabinet to mark Aug. 15 -- which is the anniversary of the end of World War II -- as "Anti-Colonialism Day."

Yu, who was at the committee meeting, said that the government should establish a monument in memory of Taiwanese who died fighting for Japan during World War II, as well as for those who died in battles between Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) forces and Chinese Communist Party forces.

The government should also compensate families of the deceased because it had taken over some of the properties left behind by Japan after World War II, Yu said.

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