Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) officials and pan-green camp academics are to attend a two-day forum on cross-strait relations today, with a senior Chinese official responsible for Taiwan affairs also due to attend.
The party will have its first opportunity to engage in face-to-face communication with Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials at the forum in Taipei.
Sun Yafu (孫亞夫), deputy director of China’s Taiwan Affairs Office (TAO), is leading the Chinese delegation, which includes other TAO officials and academics from Chinese government-affiliated think tanks.
The event, organized by the pro-unification Chinese Integration Association (CIA), was originally planned for June, but was canceled due to the government’s refusal to grant entry visas to Chinese participants with ties to Chinese military and security authorities.
The forum is expected to focus on cross-strait relations under China’s new set of leaders, but it could also touch on sensitive bilateral political issues and the military confidence-building measures.
CIA chairman Chang Ya-chung (張亞中), a National Taiwan University (NTU) professor, said that about 200 Taiwanese and 40 Chinese participants will attend the forum, with the Chinese officials participating in a private capacity.
However, Chang said those in Chinese government positions would not speak or make public comments during the forum, with the exception of Sun, who is scheduled to speak at the opening ceremony.
Joseph Wu (吳釗燮), the executive director of the DPP’s Policy Research Committee and the party’s representative to the US, will lead the pan-green camp delegation, which includes NTU professor Chen Ming-tong (陳明通), DPP think tank deputy executive director You Ying-lung (游盈隆), National Chengchi University professor Tung Chen-yuan (童振源) and National Dong Hwa University professor Shih Cheng-feng (施正鋒).
Former National Security Council secretary-general Su Chi (蘇起) will head the pan-blue camp delegation.
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