A group of city councilors yesterday heaped more opprobrium Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) for meeting with Chinese officials at China’s liaison offices in Hong Kong and Macau on Friday and Saturday.
The group, called “Taiwan Consensus” (台派抵加), comprises eight city councilors from the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), the Green Party and the Social Democratic Party.
Han can visit Hong Kong and Macau to sell fruit, but it would be unacceptable if he intends to sell Taiwan’s sovereignty, they told a news conference at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei.
Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times
Han had said he visited the territories to promote Kaohsiung’s agricultural and fishery products.
DPP Taichung City Councilor Huang Shou-ta (黃守達) said the meetings showed that Han supports Beijing’s “one country, two systems” policy and intends to represent the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) when he runs for president next year.
Han should give an honest account of his meetings with the Chinese officials as soon as possible, Huang said.
Taipei City Councilor Miao Poya (苗博雅) of the Social Democratic Party said that China’s liaison office in Hong Kong is directly controlled by the Chinese State Council, adding that even the head of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government must avoid visiting the office for fear of conflict of interest.
“What was Han doing there? According to the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (臺灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例), Han is not supposed to speak with Chinese officials about political affairs without authorization from the government. He should report his conversations to the Mainland Affairs Council [MAC],” Miao said.
Han is likely to represent the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) in the presidential election, DPP Keelung City Councilor Jiho Chang (張之豪) said.
“Now he walks into China’s liaison offices in Hong Kong and Macau. This is the greatest crisis facing the nation. Not only Taiwanese, but friends of Taiwan around the world should pay attention to this matter,” he said.
That Han did not inform the MAC about the meetings beforehand is outrageous, DPP New Taipei City Councilor Tai Wei-shan (戴瑋姍) said, adding that Taiwan could lose its sovereignty over selling fruits to the territories.
The KMT, too, has a responsibility to protect the nation’s security and sovereignty, DPP New Taipei City Councilor Chang Chih-hao (張志豪) said.
“The KMT should restrain its members, instead of changing its rules about nominating presidential candidates,” he said.
DPP Kaohsiung City Councilor Kao Min-lin (高閔琳) said on Facebook that Han is a habitual liar.
“On the surface, he was promoting agricultural and fishery products. In reality, he was attending a meeting as an apprentice of China’s ‘one country, two systems’ framework,” she said.
Aside from showing his loyalty to the CCP, Han’s most important task is to form a “united front” with China and ask for Beijing’s permission to run in the presidential election, Kao said.
All Taiwanese, regardless of party affiliation or generational differences, should protect the nation’s democracy and freedom together, she added.
Responding to the criticism, Han said: “All these twisted comments are meaningless and are not worth repeating.”
“We gladly accept visits arranged by Hong Kong and Macau, from those arranged by airports to those by slaughterhouses,” he said.
“We are brave enough to visit and hope to make friends with open-minded people here,” Han added.
Additional reporting by Ko Yu-hao
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