Legal experts and representatives of political parties yesterday accused the Taiwan High Administrative Court of aiding China in its “united front” campaign against Taiwan, after it ruled against the Ministry of the Interior, which had fined 27 Taiwanese for working for local government offices in China.
The ruling runs counter to the prevailing public view regarding the protection of Taiwan’s sovereignty, as the public and lawmakers strongly support enhancing national security measures to combat China’s disinformation campaigns and “united front” tactics, attorney Huang Di-ying (黃帝穎) said, adding that the ruling undermines these efforts.
Huang, along with legal experts and academics from the Taiwan Association of University Professors (TAUP), at a briefing yesterday urged the ministry to appeal the court’s ruling on Thursday last week.
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times
The 27 defendants had been fined NT$100,000 each for working as assistants to the heads of local community management committees.
In 2018, the defendants took up the jobs mainly in Xiamen in China’s Fujian Province. They had collectively signed a work contract brokered by a private company, but their wages were reportedly paid by Xiamen’s municipal agencies.
Huang said that the ministry must appeal the ruling, because the case had contravened the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (臺灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例), which prohibits Taiwanese from holding a position or becoming a member of political party, military unit or government agency in China.
Although the ruling was based on the defendants’ right to work and their freedom to choose a job, Huang said that the judges had overextended their reach by ignoring the law, while China has threatened Taiwan with an invasion.
Independent Legislator Freddy Lim (林昶佐), pointing to the recent approval of the Anti-Infiltration Act (反滲透法) and bills that were amended to bolster Taiwan’s national security against threats from China, said that the ruling should not have superseded laws passed in the Legislative Yuan.
The contract signed by the 27 Taiwanese reportedly also said that they must abide by the so-called “1992 consensus” and adhere to the “one China” principle.
Lim said that “the ruling would permit our citizens to work for an enemy state,” which has would to go to war to annex Taiwan.
“We really must question this decision,” he said.
Huang said the ruling showed the failure of the government’s push for judicial reform, as the Taiwan High Administrative Court had in the past few years years made rulings that went against the public’s expectations.
“It is time for the Judicial Yuan to educate these judges, as they seem to be stuck in the era of a one party-state regime,” Huang said.
The so-called “1992 consensus,” a term former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) in 2006 admitted making up in 2000, refers to a tacit understanding between the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and the Chinese Communist Party that both sides of the Taiwan Strait acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.
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