The Mainland Affairs Council is closely monitoring if the authorities in Macau would try to force three remaining Taiwanese officials in the Office of Macau Affairs to sign a pledge to recognize the “one China” principle as a condition for them to receive a visa extension.
The three officials have all applied to extend their visas. Their applications have yet to be approved, the council said.
The last Taiwanese official is allowed to stay in Macau until Oct. 30 when their visa expires.
Since 2019, Taiwanese officials and contractors working in the Office of Macau Affairs have been asked to sign an affidavit recognizing Beijing’s “one China” principle as a precondition for a visa, council sources said.
Those refusing to comply would be denied entry to Macau or their visas would not be extended, they said.
As China is getting ready to celebrate its National Day on Oct. 1, the government in Macau is very likely to try to force the three Taiwanese officials to sign the “one China” pledge, council sources said.
The post of director at the office in Macau has remained vacant since Chen Hsueh-huai (陳雪懷) retired in 2019.
As the requirement to sign a “one China” pledge has made it impossible to appoint a new director, the council had asked the Taiwanese officials whose visas have yet to expire to serve as acting directors since then.
In June last year, former acting director of the Office of Macau Affairs Chen Chia-hung (陳佳鴻) returned to Taiwan after refusing to sign the “one China” pledge.
The office would be left with only Macanese employees if the three Taiwanese officials in Macau are forced to leave, the council said.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Wang Mei-hui (王美惠) yesterday said that the council does not need to wait until the final day to vacate the office in Macau.
“The ‘one China’ principle is designed to destroy the Republic of China and force Taiwanese to recognize the People’s Republic of China as the suzerain. Taiwan and China are two nations separated by the Taiwan Strait. Taiwanese officials will never sign such a pledge. Instead of waiting until the last day, the council needs to prepare for the possible outcome in advance, because there is no way that Taiwanese officials can be stationed in Macau without a visa,” Wang said.
Meanwhile, the council is considering selling the Dr Sun Yat-sen Memorial House in Macau if Macau refuses to extend the visas of the three remaining officials.
The council has full ownership of the memorial house, a property of the government registered under the name of a Singaporean firm.
The property with an area of 439.67m2 is valued at about NT$140 million (US$4.54 million), the council said, adding that it is the only place in China where Taiwan’s national flag can be displayed.
The council is leaning toward selling the property in case Beijing confiscates it after the last Taiwanese officials leave.
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