Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairwoman Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱) got into an argument with former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) at a dinner for KMT top brass on Monday, sources said, amid a debate within the party about interpretations of the so-called “1992 consensus.”
Ma hosted the dinner for senior party members and former vice chairmen who served during his tenure as party chairman to discuss the “1992 consensus,” a term former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) in 2006 admitted to making up in 2000 that refers to a tacit understanding between the KMT and the Chinese government that both sides of the Taiwan Strait acknowledge that there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.
Sixteen high-level party officials were at the banquet, including former vice president Wu Den-yih (吳敦義), New Taipei City Mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫), KMT Vice Chairman Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌), former KMT vice chairman Jason Hu (胡志強) and former KMT secretary-general King Pu-tsung (金溥聰).
Photo: Lin Cheng-kun, Taipei Times
A source at the dinner who declined to be named said Hung was seated directly across from Ma, but refused to make eye contact with him and arrived for at the event, which started at 6:30pm, at 7:40pm, citing fundraising activities for her lateness.
Discussions before Hung’s arrival were focused on party assets and “special party fees” that Hung proposed to address the issue of low funds, with Ma saying he would be willing to contribute NT$200,000, the source said.
After Hung’s arrival Ma, steered the discussion toward the “one China” issue, with the source quoting him as saying: “The 1992 consensus is essentially ‘one China, different interpretations.’”
The source added that Ma said he would “prefer to repeat himself rather than have this point overlooked.”
Hung avoided looking at Ma throughout the dinner and fixed her makeup whenever he spoke, the source said.
At one point, the source quoted Hung as saying to Ma: “I already know everything you’re saying, but negotiations between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait are complex.”
Ma said that he realized he might offend others by pressing the issue, but added that he is simply an old, retired man who genuinely wants to see the party caucus resolve the issue, the source said.
While no problems would arise from him not mentioning “one China, different interpretations” in the context of the “1992 consensus,” there are others who would cause problems by not explicitly using the entire phrase, Ma was quoted as saying.
The source said that while Ma was discussing the issue, Hung interjected, asking: “Does the 1992 consensus not also mention the issue of peaceful unification of both sides of the Taiwan Strait?”
Hung questioned Ma’s emphasis on “one China, different interpretations” while failing to bring up “unification,” the source added.
Another attendee told Hung she had confused the Guidelines for National Unification with the “1992 consensus,” showing Hung the details on a smartphone, the source said.
In an interview following the banquet, Ma told reporters that the KMT must be united on the issue of the “1992 consensus of one China, different interpretations.”
Hung’s “peace platform” that was passed last month mentioned a “deepening of the 1992 consensus,” but omitted any mention of “one China, different interpretations,” which sparked conflict within the party about the direction of cross-strait relations.
When asked by reporters whether Hung would mention “one China, different interpretations” in a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) next week, Ma said: “She understands completely. She heard everything [that Ma said].”
KMT Central Policy Committee director Alex Tsai (蔡正元) yesterday said local media used “sensational and dramatic language” in reports of the event.
High-level KMT officials invited to the event spent most of the time discussing the Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee’s “illegal and unconstitutional” freezing of the party’s main bank account, Tsai said.
“At the banquet, Ma, maintaining his usual caring attitude toward the KMT, also explained to guests the reasons behind his painstaking effort to push for the ‘1992 consensus’ and the ‘one China, different interpretations’ formulation while in office,” Tsai said.
Additional reporting by Stacy Hsu
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday said that a surge in respiratory illnesses in China has been caused by at least seven types of pathogens, and small children, elderly people and immunocompromised people should temporarily avoid unnecessary visits to China. The recent outbreak of respiratory illnesses in China is mainly in the north and among children, CDC Deputy Director-General Philip Lo (羅一鈞) said on Monday. Data released by the Chinese National Health Commission on Sunday showed that among children aged one to four, the main pathogens were influenza viruses and rhinoviruses, while among children aged five to 14, the main pathogens
A study published by online booking platform Expedia revealed searches for travel to Taipei have ballooned 2,786 percent following the lifting of COVID-19 pandemic travel restrictions due to the city being a “designation dupe” for Seoul. The TikTok trend for duping — referring to substituting a designation for a more inexpensive alternative — helped propel interest in Taipei, it said in a consumer survey titled “Unpack ‘24,” which was conducted from September to October in 14 countries. Location dupes are “every bit as delightful as the tried-and-true places travelers love,” Expedia trend tracker Melanie Fish said of the year’s popular alternatives, which
INCENTIVES: The province’s ‘21 measures’ include enhanced agricultural loans for Taiwanese farmers, and rent waivers and housing subsidies for Taiwanese start-ups China’s Fujian Province on Monday began implementing 15 economic measures targeting Taiwanese in its latest bid to fan pro-Beijing sentiment ahead of the Jan. 13 elections. Chinese state-run Xinhua news agency said the policies were part of “21 measures” unveiled in September by China for Fujian’s “integrated cross-strait development demonstration zone.” The partially implemented measures, which were created with input from Beijing, include reducing the wait time for Taiwanese applying for a visa from 20 days to five days and free public transit for Taiwanese older than 65, it said. Residents of Taiwan were granted use of the “all provincial Taiwanese entrepreneur compatriot
Tokyo has requested regions in southern Japan to accommodate people evacuated from Okinawa Prefecture in case of a war in the Taiwan Strait, Kyodo news agency reported on Monday. If a conflict breaks out across the Strait, people on the Sakishima Islands, which lie between Taiwan proper and Okinawa’s main island, would have to be evacuated from the prefecture, the news agency reported. An estimated 120,000 people would need to be moved, including 110,000 citizens and 10,000 tourists, it said. Niitani Koushi, who is in charge of crisis management at the Japanese Cabinet Secretariat, visited Yamaguchi Prefecture at the southern end of Japan’s