Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜), the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) presidential candidate, yesterday pledged to raise the global profile of Taiwanese art and culture if elected in the Jan. 11 presidential and legislative elections.
Han made the promise at the launch of a support group for his presidential bid comprising more than 30 art-related organizations.
“The world of art is composed of peace and harmony. It is usually unaffected by mundane businesses like politics, so I am grateful that you all have gathered here today to root for my election,” Han told the audience.
Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times
As well as engaging with the world more with regard to language education, Han vowed to facilitate more art and traditional culture exchanges with other countries, saying that international connections play a major role in Taiwan’s development.
The group presented Han with two calligraphy works — one reading “defeating thousands of enemies” (橫掃千軍) and the other, “commoner president” (庶民總統).
Han worked with six calligraphers to create seven calligraphy placards that read “never forget that the world has many sufferers” (莫忘世上苦人多).
Later yesterday, Han and KMT Chairman Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) shared the stage at the inauguration of another support group for Han comprising women’s groups.
Asked on the sidelines about President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) choosing former premier William Lai (賴清德) as her running mate, Han said that the two must tell the public where Taiwan is headed.
Han said that he and his running mate, former premier Simon Chang (張善政), share a clear stance — their love for the Republic of China — and called on Tsai to voice her support for Taiwanese independence if she and Lai — an independence advocate — are also of the same mind.
Han said that Lai faced “political oppression” when he challenged Tsai in the DPP’s presidential primary, and made several pleas to Tsai not to attack him with online smear campaigns and mudslinging.
“The Tsai-Lai ticket is nothing more than a compromise made under factional pressure within the party,” Han said.
Their partnership is a strategy to win more votes, and not a cooperation based on mutual beliefs, he added.
Additional reporting by CNA
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