The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is happy to see mayors and county heads become involved in exchanges with their Chinese counterparts, DPP spokesman Cheng Yun-peng (鄭運鵬) said yesterday.
Cheng made the comment when asked about Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) attending the annual Taipei-Shanghai forum.
Cheng said the DPP was happy to see Ko and three DPP city councilors attend the Shanghai forum and exchange ideas with their Chinese counterparts.
Asked about the content and format of the visit, Cheng said the visit was being made by the Taipei City Government and the DPP would not comment on specific aspects of the trip.
The DPP has been a vocal critic of President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) efforts to bring Taiwan and China closer together and has rejected the so-called “1992 consensus” advocated by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) government as a framework to guide relations with Beijing.
The “1992 consensus” refers to a tacit understanding between the KMT and Beijing that both sides acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.
Because of the DPP’s stance on cross-strait relations, it is thought to be viewed with suspicion by Beijing.
Asked if China might restrict or stop DPP city and county heads from visiting China, Cheng said he has received no indication of such an intention.
He said that the DPP’s Central Standing Committee has reported that the 13 cities or counties headed by DPP officials would set up cross-strait units to promote exchanges across the Taiwan Strait and the party would respect the approaches they take in communicating with Chinese authorities.
Cross-strait relations have taken center stage at the Taipei-Shanghai Forum.
During a meeting with Ko on Monday, Shanghai Mayor Yang Xiong (楊雄) mentioned the “1992 consensus.”
Ko made no specific response, and Taipei City Government spokesman Sydney Lin (林鶴明) later said that Ko’s thoughts on cross-strait relations remain the same.
Ko has previously said that he would respect agreements signed between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait and would base ties on the principles of mutual understanding, respect and cooperation.
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