Sat, Aug 25, 2012 - Page 3 News List

DPP warns that Taiwan must not side with China

By Chris Wang  /  Staff reporter

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday rejected comments by Beijing’s top official on Taiwanese affairs and reiterated that the party is insisting on non-collaboration with China over the Diaoyutai Islands (釣魚台) dispute.

“The objective fact is that Taiwan claims sovereignty over the Diaoyutai Islands and it will not cooperate with China on the issue of the disputed islands, and that is the consensus of the ruling and opposition parties in Taiwan,” DPP spokesperson Lin Chun-hsien (林俊憲) said yesterday.

The remarks were in response to China’s Taiwan Affairs Office Director Wang Yi (王毅), who said on Thursday in Beijing that “both sides of the Taiwan Strait enjoy a high degree of consensus on issues such as the protection of territorial sovereignty and the Diaoyutais.”

Wang also said that party-to-party exchanges between the DPP and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) would be difficult because of the DPP’s pro-independence stance and added that DPP members would be welcome to visit China, but only if “they come in an appropriate capacity and with a desirable attitude.”

“The CCP should neither fear the DPP nor set limitations on any DPP visit to China because it needs to know more about Taiwan as well,” Lin said.

The DPP would take its time to engage with China with a tempo as it sees fit, Lin said, adding that any bilateral exchanges with preconditions would negatively impact the cross-strait engagement process.

DPP Legislator Cheng Li-chiun (鄭麗君) echoed the same tone at a separate press conference, but directed her comments at President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九).

Ma should follow the message he has been preaching over the Diaoyutais as well as what he proposed in his East Asia peace initiative by not doing or saying anything that could escalate tensions between Taiwan and Japan, she said.

“He should stand firm and stop creating space for Beijing to take advantage of the dispute to carry out its united front over Taiwan and to globally promote its ‘one China’ principle,” she said.

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