President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) turned his back on his country by defining relations between Taiwan and China as “special relations” instead of a “state-to-state” relationship, former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) said last night.
Speaking with Mexican newspaper Sol de Mexico last month, Ma defined ties between Taiwan and China as “special relations,” reversing a decade-long government position.
The text of the interview was released by the Presidential Office last Wednesday. The next day, the Office elaborated on the text, saying that under the 11th Amendment to the Constitution and the Statute Governing the Relations Between the Peoples of the Taiwan Area and Mainland Area (台灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例), the relationship between Taiwan and China is one between two regions.
“It is between the ‘Taiwan region’ and the ‘mainland region,’” Presidential Office Spokesman Wang Yu-chi (王郁琦) said on Thursday.
At a fundraising dinner last night in Taipei, Lee said that Taiwan is a de jure, independent country and that only the people, not the president, have the power to change the cross-strait “status quo” in a referendum.
“When I was president back in 1999, I at least advocated that Taiwan and China had ‘special state-to-state relations’ and that Taiwan certainly does not have an internal relationship with China,” Lee said.
“The people have elected Ma as their leader. But it does not authorize him to surrender Taiwan’s sovereignty. The decisive power lies in the hands of the people. If any changes were to take place, they would have to be through a referendum — to let the people determine their future,” he added.
Lee said Taiwan’s sovereignty is an issue for the international community. No one on either side of the Taiwan Strait could unilaterally alter the “status quo,” he said.
The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and the Chinese Communist Party, he said, must not think that they can keep people in the dark by making all the decisions on Taiwan’s future.
“The US and Japan have repeatedly warned Ma of his pro-China leanings,” Lee said.
Despite reminders he had delivered to Ma that there was no “1992 consensus,” Lee said that Ma caved in to pressure and embraced the fictional deal to curry favor with Beijing so that Chinese tourists could be allowed into Taiwan.
ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY JENNY W. HSU
A recently discovered supernova is the brightest and closest to Earth identified in the past decade, and can be observed with basic equipment, the Taipei Astronomical Museum said on Wednesday. The supernova has an absolute magnitude of 14.9 in luminosity and is in the Pinwheel Galaxy (M101) about 21 million light-years from Earth. It was discovered early on May 20 by Japanese amateur astronomer Koichi Itagaki, who immediately reported the finding to the International Astronomical Union, the museum said. The supernova was designated SN 2023ixf following the astronomical naming conventions for supernovas, it added. The museum said that it observed
Tropical storm Guchol is moving in a northeasterly direction off the east coast of the Philippines and will not hit Taiwan, but will impact local weather starting on Friday, the Central Weather Bureau said Thursday. The storm would bring a low-pressure system northward toward the vicinity of Taiwan, forecaster Chao Hung (趙竑) said. Northern Taiwan will see intermittent rain showers in the morning, and thunderstorms in the afternoon on Friday, he said, adding that rain would be heavier on the east coast and in the central-southern mountainous areas. Rainfall would continue into Saturday, and would spread throughout Taiwan proper, he
Exiled Chinese democracy advocate Wang Dan (王丹) yesterday denied an accusation by former Taiwanese political worker Lee Yuan-chun (李援軍) that Wang had sexually harassed him in a hotel room in New York nine years ago. There was a huge gap between Lee’s accusation and his own understanding and memory, Wang wrote on Facebook, adding it was hard for him to respond further regarding a “unilateral description” made by someone else. Wang made the remarks after his initial response on Facebook was met with criticism, with people saying he did not directly address the allegation. Lee on Friday wrote on Facebook that he
A man was arrested in Hsinchu on Saturday on suspicion of filming women in the women’s washroom of a shopping mall in the city, local Chinese-language media reported on Thursday. The man was arrested at around noon on Saturday when a woman using a stall in the mall’s washroom noticed a cellphone being held above her from the neighboring stall, reports said. The woman ran out of the washroom and yelled to her husband to help her, after which the suspect – who was dressed as a woman – attempted to flee, but was subdued by other men until police