Xinhua news agency on Saturday accused President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) of raising tensions between Taipei and Beijing by saying that her administration is unlikely to accept the so-called “1992 consensus” if it is against the public will.
Xinhua criticized the remarks Tsai made in an interview with the Washington Post that was published on Thursday, in which she said the government would not accept a deadline for conditions that are against the will of the people — in response to a question on whether she would agree to the “1992 consensus” by a certain deadline.
The “1992 consensus” refers to a tacit understanding between the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and Beijing that both sides of the Taiwan Strait acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means. Former former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) said in 2006 that he had made up the term in 2000.
Tsai’s government has repeatedly used public opinion as an excuse to refuse to accept the “1992 consensus” and her interview as the latest attempt to fill out “an answer sheet that she has to, but has not yet completed,” Xinhua said
“The Taiwanese public wants to maintain peace in the Taiwan Strait and avoid conflict. Is that public opinion? [Taiwanese] want to develop economic partnership with China to create a win-win situation. Is that public opinion? [Taiwanese] want Chinese from both sides of the Taiwan Strait to join hands to bring about a renaissance of [the Chinese] people. Is that public opinion?” Xinhua said.
“Democratic Progressive Party politicians have hijacked and distorted public opinion for the interest of the party when the majority wants peace between Taiwan and China. They can deceive the public for a while, but not forever,” it said.
A series of events that took place after the Tsai administration took office, including the Okinotori atoll dispute, the South China Sea dispute and the accidental firing of a missile, were “answers given by the new Taiwanese government on the cross-strait relationship,” the report said, asking whether those answers were meant to “solve questions” as Tsai pledged to do in her inaugural address.
The refusal to accept the “1992 consensus” would lead to distrust between Taipei and Beijing and deprive the two parties of a communication channel, Xinhua said.
Under such circumstances, an accident might cause the tension across the Taiwan Strait to rise suddenly, which would destroy the past eight year’s peaceful development, the report said.
The “de-sinicization” of high-school curriculum guidelines was a “cultural act of Taiwanese independence” and an attempt to provoke the Chinese authority, Xinhua said.
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