The Formosan Association for Public Affairs (FAPA) has issued a strongly worded condemnation of the recent proposal that relations between Taiwan and China could be dealt with under a “one country, two areas (一國兩區)” formula.
According to a statement issued in Washington on Tuesday, the proposal — supported by President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) — puts Taiwan on a “slippery slope” and severely undermines Taiwan’s sovereignty and the freedom to choose its own future.
“We, together with our friends and relatives in Taiwan, have worked hard for a free and democratic Taiwan, and do not want to see those achievements swept away by an authoritarian China,” the statement said. “If the Ma government now agrees that Taiwan is an area under one country then it is implicitly saying that Taiwan is part of the PRC [People’s Republic of China].”
Signed by FAPA president Mark Kao (高龍榮), the statement concludes: “The future of Taiwan should be determined by the Taiwanese people themselves through democratic mechanisms and not negotiated away in shady backroom deals.”
FAPA said former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) chairman Wu Poh-hsiung (吳伯雄) suggested in a meeting with Chinese President Hu Jintao (胡錦濤) last month that the “one country, two areas” formula be used.
It was later confirmed that the proposal had been authorized by Ma, FAPA said.
“We firmly believe that Taiwan is a free and democratic country unto itself — an independent and autonomous nation with its own democratically elected government,” Kao said. “Wu’s actions in Beijing dangerously undermine Taiwan’s already-shrinking international space.”
The statement said that the Ma administration’s argument that “one country, two areas” is consistent with the Republic of China Constitution “is simply outlandish.”
The Ma administration’s “new formulation” was also inconsistent with the views held by the “vast majority” of Taiwanese, it said.
A recent TVBS poll showed that only 19 percent of Taiwanese agree with the “one country, two areas” formula.
That formula — applied to Hong Kong — is a “complete non-starter when it comes to Taiwan,” Kao said.
“As citizens who deeply value democracy, we believe that the way the idea was raised was a basic violation of democratic principles,” he said.
“It occurred in a party-to-party forum between CCP-KMT [Chinese Communist Party-Chinese Nationalist Party], two parties that are known for their disregard of democracy,” he said.
“Such a mechanism lacks any transparency, accountability or legislative oversight, and is thus contrary to the basic values for which we stand,” Kao said.