In response to China’s insistence on recognition of “one China” as a precondition for entry into the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday reiterated the party’s stance on defending Taiwan’s sovereignty.
“This is an issue that crops up whenever we attempt to join any international organization or institution,” Tsai said in response to reporters’ requests for comments on China’s requirements for Taiwan’s participation in the AIIB. “We will find ways to maximize our national interests while defending our position when seeking to enter international organizations.”
Former vice president Vincent Siew (蕭萬長) expressed Taiwan’s interest in joining the proposed AIIB during a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) at the opening of the Boao Forum for Asia in China’s Hainan Province on Saturday.
Later, during a news conference, Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi (王毅) said that China would welcome Taiwan’s participation in the AIIB, but that Taiwan must recognize the “one China” principle, adding that Taiwan and Hong Kong need to have further talks with China on the details — which many have taken as a hint that Taiwan would receive the same treatment as Hong Kong.
Meanwhile, Tsai yesterday rejected the notion that a visit to the US by DPP Secretary-General Joseph Wu (吳昭燮) was related to her own planned visit.
“Wu’s trip to the US was planned a long time ago. It is just a regular visit, since he was our former representative to the US,” Tsai said. “He will be exchanging views with the US on issues of mutual concern.”
As for her own trip to the US, Tsai said the party is still working out the details, including the exact date.
Separately yesterday, speaking at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport before boarding a flight for the US in the afternoon, Wu echoed Tsai in saying that his trip was a routine visit to the US, adding that he would be meeting with Taiwanese expatriate communities to garner their support for the DPP, as well as some friends in the US.
He declined to be specific about who the friends are.
“I will be meeting with friends in the US — whether in US Congress or at think tanks — to exchange ideas on current issues,” Wu said. “However, in the interest of mutual trust, I am not at liberty to discuss who I meet with and what we talk about.”
GREATER NUMBER: The sorties might have been a response to the US and the EU expressing concern on Friday over China’s ‘provocations’ in the Taiwan Strait Twenty-five Chinese military aircraft and four naval ships were detected around Taiwan from 6am Saturday to 6am yesterday, including eight airplanes that had crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait and another two that entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ). The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft that entered Taiwan’s southwestern ADIZ were a Y-8 anti-submarine plane and a BZK-005 uncrewed aerial vehicle, the Ministry of National Defense said. The aircraft that flew across the median line include two Sukhoi Su-30 fighter jets, four J-16 multipurpose fighters and two J-10 jets, the ministry’s official Web site showed. Taiwan’s armed forces monitored the
Mask easing: Teachers are allowed to take their masks off while lecturing indoors, but students should keep theirs on, as COVID-19 measures ease this week The Ministry of Education (MOE) yesterday released new on-campus COVID-19 prevention guidelines, stating that masks can be taken off while exercising, singing, dancing, performing, taking photographs, dining, drinking, video and voice recording, hosting events, presenting speeches and lecturing outdoors. Large outdoor events organized by schools should comply with the mask regulations issued by the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), it added. The new guidelines came into effect yesterday, and people in Taiwan are no longer required to wear masks outdoors for the first time since May 19 last year. The CECC announced the easing of the mask mandate on Monday, adding that it
LUNAR NEW YEAR PEAK: Taiwanese who are in China should get vaccinated and consider returning early, as infection rates are expected to increase, the CECC said China faces five major problems once COVID-19 begins spreading there, with a peak in infections likely during the Lunar New Year holidays, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Victor Wang (王必勝), who heads the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), said yesterday. Wang wrote on Facebook that according to the center’s data, the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in China is worth noting, as the new Omicron subvariants BF.7 and BA.5.2 spreading in China are highly infectious and are more transmissible than the previously dominating Omicron subvariants. “The virus cannot be eliminated even under China’s strict control measures,” he wrote. “Its policy
‘SEXUAL ASSAULT’: Taipei prosecutors said that cooperation agreements between Taiwan and the Czech Republic grant Czech officials protection against prosecution The Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office yesterday reaffirmed that it would not charge a Czech official with sexual assault because he is protected by diplomatic immunity. The office released a statement saying it has verified that the man works for the Czech Economic and Cultural Office Taipei’s foreign affairs corps and is thereby protected from criminal prosecution. A foreign graduate student in Taiwan had filed a complaint alleging that the section head of the Czech Economic and Trade Section had sexually assaulted her on April 21 last year. The woman said the Czech official had invited her to his home and then forced her