Sat, Sep 12, 2015 - Page 3 News List

US resolution supporting UN bid introduced

By William Lowther  /  Staff reporter in WASHINGTON

A resolution promoting UN membership for Taiwan has been introduced into the US House of Representatives.

“It is the sense of [the US] Congress that Taiwan and its people deserve membership in the United Nations,” resolution HCR76 reads.

The resolution was introduced on Thursday by US Representative Scott Garrett, a Republican, and was timed to proceed next week’s opening of the annual UN General Assembly session in New York.

“For more than 50 years, a close relationship has existed between the United States and Taiwan, which has been of major economic, cultural and strategic advantage to both countries,” the resolution says.

It adds that Taiwan has repeatedly expressed its “strong desire” to participate in the UN and that nothing in the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act supports the exclusion or expulsion of Taiwan from membership in any international financial or other international organization.

“Taiwan fulfills all conditions for statehood — a permanent population, a defined territory, government and capacity to enter into relations with other states,” Formosa Association for Public Affairs president Mark Kao says.

He says there are no legal obstacles for Taiwan to join the UN.

“China opposes Taiwan’s membership because it would constitute international recognition of the reality that Taiwan is an independent country,” Kao says. “It is time for the international community to form a coalition to jointly stand up against China and support Taiwan’s entry into the UN.”

A rally is being organized this weekend by the Taiwanese-American community to march from the UN Plaza to Times Square in support of the Taiwan’s UN membership.

In addition, a “sit-in” at the UN’s Dag Hammarskjold Plaza is being planned for Sept. 25 to coincide with the Pope’s visit to the UN.

“The organizers and supporters of these events wish to inspire others to ignite change and awareness regarding Taiwan’s recognition in the global community,” a statement from a group identifying itself as the “Keep Taiwan Free Movement” says.

Another group, called the Taiwan United Nations Alliance and led by former minister of national defense Michael Tsai (蔡明憲), arrived in Washington from Taipei this week and is now in New York to also lobby for UN membership.

Taiwan has not been a member of the UN since 1971, and under pressure from China, the UN has denied Taiwan membership under its official name “the Republic of China” since 1993.

China is a permanent member of the UN Security Council and perfectly placed to veto any attempts by Taiwan to rejoin.

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