Tue, Jan 08, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Chiang Wan-an reaffirms support for Tsai’s ‘musts’

RESPECTING THE ROC:The KMT lawmaker said he rejected Xi Jinping’s proposal to unify under ‘one country, two systems,’ but also Tsai’s refusal to accept the ‘1992 consensus’

By Lin Liang-sheng and William Hetherington  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chiang Wan-an speaks at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei on June 29 last year.

Photo: George Tsorng, Taipei Times

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) yesterday reaffirmed his opposition to China’s “one country, two systems” formula after his previous support for President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) “four musts” drew ire from pan-blue supporters.

Chiang, grandson of former president Chiang Ching-kuo (蔣經國), first expressed opposition to the “one country, two systems” formula during a political talk show on Thursday last week, in which he also expressed support for Tsai’s “four musts” as a basis for cross-strait relations.

Tsai in her New Year’s Day speech on Tuesday last week said that China must recognize the existence of the Republic of China (ROC); respect the values of democracy and freedom that Taiwan’s 23 million residents hold dear; resolve cross-strait differences in a peaceful and equitable manner; and engage in negotiations with the government or an institution with a mandate from the government.

Chiang Wan-an’s support for Tsai’s position on cross-strait ties drew criticism from KMT supporters, with many attacking him on Facebook and some calling him a “separatist.”

A KMT member praising Tsai’s speech “is classic inexperience and naivety,” former KMT Central Policy Committee director Alex Tsai (蔡正元) said.

“When did Tsai Ing-wen and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) ever acknowledge the existence of the ROC? Does [Beijing] require the abolition of freedom and democratic systems [as part of unification]?” he asked.

The so-called “1992 consensus” is a peaceful way for Taiwan to achieve parity with China, Alex Tsai said.

The “1992 consensus,” a term former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) in 2006 admitted making up in 2000, refers to a tacit understanding between the KMT and the Chinese Communist Party that both sides of the Taiwan Strait acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.

Chiang Wan-an yesterday said that he supports the KMT’s definition of the “1992 consensus” that both sides of the Strait must be free to define “China” in their own way.

That freedom forms the basis of the “1992 consensus,” which is built on the foundation of the ROC Constitution and is executed through the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (台灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例), he said.

While he does not agree with Tsai Ing-wen’s refusal to acknowledge the “1992 consensus,” he could not accept the “one country, two systems” formula, Chiang said.

“Taiwan is not Hong Kong,” he said, adding that most Taiwanese would not accept unification under the formula.

Whoever is president needs to follow the nation’s Constitution and protect its sovereignty, he said.

He added that regardless of who is president, they must acknowledge the existence of the ROC, protect democracy and the freedom of its citizens, and must resolve differences with China in a way that recognizes the equal legitimacy of the ROC and its institutions.

“If President Tsai refuses to accept the ‘1992 consensus’ and refuses to acknowledge its existence, I implore her to provide a specific solution for discourse with China, and not just throw around hipster slogans,” Chiang Wan-an said.

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