The government made no effort to invite voices from the opposition to a recent series of forums on cross-strait diplomacy, a former Taiwanese government official said yesterday.
Commenting on the sidelines of a forum on a cross-strait peace agreement at National Chengchi University’s Institute of International Relations (IIR), Joseph Wu (吳釗燮), former Mainland Affairs Council chairman, said agencies under President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) administration had failed to invite academics from the pan-green camp or former government officials to the forums, at which former Chinese Communist Party officials and Chinese academics were invited to speak.
“They had to invite me [this morning] because I’m a fellow here at the IIR,” Wu, the sole pan-green voice at the forum, told the Taipei Times, adding that the situation had been similar at a pair of forums held over the weekend to mark the 60th anniversary of cross-strait relations.
“[Chinese President] Hu Jintao’s [胡錦濤] confidant Zheng Bijian [鄭必堅] can come to Taipei and claim that the Taiwanese independence movement is doomed and some retired People’s Liberation Army general can threaten us the next day, but academics from the opposition are not invited,” Wu said.
When the Democratic Progressive Party was in power, we always made sure to invite those from the other camp to such events, he said.
This one-sided debate is hardly conducive to the process that is required to build consensus on cross-strait matters, Wu said, adding that pro-Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) academics had a tendency to mirror Ma’s “polite” approach to China, which involves no criticism of Beijing’s human rights record.
“Topics such as a peace agreement are very important and this is the first time that both sides discuss them openly,” Wu said.
Unfortunately, with opposition voices absent there is no plurality of voices and the Ma administration can give the impression that its policies are widely supported, he said.
Wu also said that the American Institute in Taiwan had not been informed about the forums, adding that this was reminiscent of the US government being kept in the dark during negotiations on Taiwan’s participation at the World Health Assembly earlier this year.
A video allegedly featuring retired general Kao An-kuo (高安國) calling on Taiwanese military officers to surrender to China and overthrow the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) government has sparked outrage and calls for him to be charged with treason. The video, titled “A message to Taiwanese military officers,” allegedly shows Kao saying: “I call on commanding officers of our military troops to stand up for Chinese nationalism, to take up this duty under heaven’s mandate to save Taiwanese from oppression and terrible suffering.” Dressed in military fatigues and a beret, the lieutenant general called on officers to overthrow the “fraudulent DPP regime,”
HASTY REVIEW CLAIMS: Medigen’s vaccine, which is to start phase 3 clinical trials later this year, should not have received emergency use authorization, Hau said Former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) vice chairman Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) is to appeal the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) authorization of Medigen Vaccine Biologics’ COVID-19 vaccine, he said yesterday. The administration on July 19 granted Medigen emergency use authorization, even though the drugmaker had not yet completed phase 3 clinical trials. The government should not authorize the use of a vaccine that has not completed phase 3 trials, Hau said in Taipei on the sidelines of an event to distribute boxed meals with former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) and Broadcasting Corp of China chairman Jaw Shaw-kong (趙少康). Hau said the government had politicized
HOUNDED ONLINE: Two Chinese firms said they would not extend their contracts with Little S, while another terminated its agreement following an Instagram post A high-profile Taiwanese TV host found herself the latest to draw fire from Chinese Internet users after referring to Taiwan’s Olympians as “national competitors.” Dee Hsu (徐熙娣) — better known as “Little S” — made the comment in an Instagram post on Sunday during the women’s singles badminton final between Tai Tzu-ying (戴資穎) of Taiwan and Chen Yufei (陳雨菲) of China. The post drew an angry reaction in China, where nationalist Internet users often police the comments of celebrities and companies for views that clash with the Chinese Communist Party’s official narrative that both sides of the Taiwan Strait are part
NEW NUMBERS: No deaths were reported yesterday, but there were 12 local cases and two imported cases — people who had returned from Thailand and the US The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday said that COVID-19 restrictions are expected to remain in place after Monday next week, as it reported 12 local infections and two imported cases. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said the 12 local cases are 10 men and two women aged 10 to 80 who began experiencing symptoms between Thursday and Saturday. Six tested positive during isolation or upon ending it, he said, adding that the sources of infection have been identified in nine cases, while three remain unclear and would be investigated. Taoyuan reported five cases, all family