Mon, Nov 18, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Cross-strait peace relies on mutual respect: academic

By Shih Hsiao-kuang and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Speaking at a forum on Saturday, Academia Sinica researcher Hsu Ssu-chien (徐斯儉) said that government treaties and cooperation between businesses should not be the foundation on which cross-strait peace is built and that the people on either side of the Taiwan Strait are the only ones who can usher in true peace.

There is no legitimacy in handling cross-strait affairs with a so-called peace accord when democracy and constitutional law have not been fully implemented on both sides of the Strait, Hsu said.

A possible political and military alliance Taiwan might enter with Beijing once a peace accord is signed would only cause other countries in the region to become more wary, which would not bring true peace to either Taiwan or China, Hsu said.

Although Beijing has stated its intention to negotiate a cross-strait peace accord, it is doing so from a nationalistic angle, one that places the value of national sovereignty over the value of human rights, Hsu said.

Beijing’s proposed cross-strait peace is based on the “one China” principle, a peace that would glorify the “Chinese Dream” and “usher in greatness for the Chunghwa race,” but sacrifice Taiwan’s efforts over the past years, Hsu said.

He questioned whether such peace could bring stability to Taiwan, or on a larger scale, to the region.

Conditional peace is not true peace, it is an alternate form of threat, Hsu said, adding that true peace should not require the surrender of values by one side to the other, but should be a value both parties in negotiation are willing to accept.

Governmental accords or corporate interaction across the Strait should not be the only channels through which cross-strait peace is brokered, Hsu said, adding that citizens of the two nations on either side of the Strait should be to ones to pressure their respective governments in implementing human rights policies.

Human rights should be the foundation for peace across the Strait, he said.

Hsu added that Taiwan should base its decision to establish an office in China on the human rights situation in that nation.

Hsu said he opposed to the ability of political and economic elites, which were in the minority, to impose political and economic monopoly over the public and negotiate backroom political agreements or peace accords.

He also said he was against the threat of violence and forcing an agreement to emerge.

Taiwan should not conduct any mutual military trust or peace accord overtures with Beijing before China has completed its democratization process, and if and when such peace accords are being negotiated, there should not be any issues concerning sovereignty, Hsu said.

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