President-elect Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) is unlikely to bring Taiwan close to Beijing any time soon as the Chinese Communist Party does not trust him, former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) said.
Speaking in an interview with Japan's Sankei Shimbun newspaper, Lee dismissed suggestions that Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) member Ma would integrate Taiwan with China.
"Taiwan will not be taken by China so easily. Why? Actually the the Chinese Communist Party does not trust Mr Ma from the bottom of its heart," he said in the interview published yesterday.
"I'm not in a position to elaborate but he is influenced very strongly by the United States," the 85-year-old Lee said of Ma.
The former president said Ma "can be self-righteous but is also modern."
Lee had supported Ma's rival, Democratic Progressive Party candidate Frank Hsieh (
Lee also doubted that China's crackdown on Tibet was a decisive factor in the election, saying that people did not want to provoke Beijing.
"Would it do Taiwan any good if we supported Tibet when Taiwan's safety is not guaranteed? No," Lee said.
Ma focused his campaign on reviving Taiwan's economy by tapping into the vast China market.
Rival Hsieh also wanted closer ties with China but was much more cautious, saying Ma's plan would leave Taiwan's economy vulnerable to being swallowed up.
Japan switched diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Bei-jing in 1972. But Lee and other people critical of China enjoy wide support in conservative circles in Japan.
Ma has tried to play down a reputation that he is anti-Japanese. Lee said he was willing to work with the incoming president to promote ties with Japan, which ruled Taiwan as a colony for a half-century until 1945.
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb
The National Taiwan Museum’s Railway Department Park in Taipei is to open to the public today. The park in Datong District (大同) near the North Gate (北門, Beimen) is one of the museum’s four branches. During the Japanese colonial era, the site housed the railway department of the Office of the Governor-General of Taiwan’s Bureau of Transportation. After World War II, it served as the headquarters for the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) for several decades. In 2007, it was listed as a national monument under the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法). At an opening ceremony yesterday, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung