Sun, Jun 03, 2018 - Page 3 News List

KMT lawmakers meet with TAO head

GROVELING?Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chuang Ruei-hsiung said the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) always sends a delegation to China after Taiwan loses a diplomatic ally

By Cheng Hung-ta and Tseng Wei-chen  /  Staff reporters

A delegation of 10 Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) lawmakers on Friday met with China’s Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO) Minister Liu Jieyi (劉結一), who reportedly touted Beijing’s 31 measures aimed at Taiwanese and vowed to step up efforts to push for “unification of the motherland” with “Taiwanese compatriots.”

The delegation, which set out for Beijing just one day after the legislative session ended, was comprised of KMT legislators Lee Yen-hsiu (李彥秀), Alicia Wang (王育敏), Johnny Chiang (江啟臣), Hsu Shu-hua (許淑華), Ko Chih-en (柯志恩), Arthur Chen (陳宜民), Lu Yu-ling (呂玉玲), Andy Yang (楊鎮浯), Sra Kakaw and Yen Kuan-heng (顏寬恆).

During their meeting with Liu, the KMT lawmakers requested that the Chinese government ensure the rights of Taiwanese businesspeople and students in China, so as to move cross-strait relations forward, Lu said.

She quoted Liu as saying that Beijing’s work to ensure those rights had never ceased, citing as an example the measures it unveiled in February to attract Taiwanese businesspeople, students and filmmakers to work in China.

According to a TAO statement, Liu vowed during the meeting to achieve the so-called “1992 consensus,” oppose any “secessionist activities that promote Taiwanese independence” and adhere to the vision that “the two sides of the Taiwan Strait are one family” when bringing “the hearts of compatriots” on both sides of Taiwan Strait together and pushing for exchanges in all parts of society.

The measures would bring about wide-ranging economic and cultural exchange and provide Taiwanese “actual benefits and future gratification,” the statement said, adding that China was willing to work with Taiwanese to promote peaceful development in the Strait and unification of the “motherland.”

The meeting drew heavy criticism from Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers.

DPP Legislator Chuang Ruei-hsiung (莊瑞雄) said in reference to the Dominican Republic and Burkina Faso switching recognition to Beijing last month that whenever Taiwan loses a diplomatic ally due to Chinese pressure, the KMT is sure to send a delegation to meet with officials in China.

Chuang said that in December 2016, then-KMT deputy chairman Chen Chen-hsiang (陳鎮湘), led a delegation to China just two days after Sao Tome and Principe severed ties with Taiwan and praised the “1992 consensus” in front of then-TAO minister Zhang Zhijun (張志軍), saying that it had majority support in Taiwan.

In June 2016, then-KMT chairwoman Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱) flew to Xiamen the day after Panama cut ties with Taiwan to attend the Strait Forum, where she met with Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference Chairman Yu Zhengsheng (俞正聲) and trumpeted her “peace platform,” Chuang added.

Noting that KMT Legislator Alex Fai (費鴻泰), who is favored by KMT headquarters to serve as caucus whip, is also slated to attend the Strait Forum this week, Chuang said he could not comprehend why KMT members frequently visit China when its suppression of Taiwan has intensified, asking whether they visit China “to open their hearts [to Beijing] or to compete for [Beijing’s] favoring eyes?”

Answering questions from the media about the lawmakers’ visit to China, former premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) of the KMT yesterday called on the public to support any delegation traveling across the Strait with the aim of maintaining stability amid political tensions.

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