President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has undermined Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) peace efforts with China, the former president said yesterday, adding that Tsai could meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平), provided she agreed to the so-called “1992 consensus.”
Ma made the remarks at a forum hosted by the Ma Ying-jeou Foundation in Taipei, marking the fifth anniversary of his meeting with Xi in Singapore on Nov. 7, 2015, the first time that leaders from both sides of the Taiwan Strait had met since 1949.
“It was for building a ‘bridge for peace’ for dialogue between the two sides of the Strait,” Ma said of the meeting.
Photo: Chang Chia-ming, Taipei Times
“The summit was not an accident, but was the result of our accumulated efforts over seven years to establish a common political foundation and build mutual trust,” he said. “Mr Xi and I exerted great effort to remove many obstacles to meet at the time, and we did so to advance the cause of peace across the Strait, and this would not be forgotten by history.”
By not accepting the “1992 consensus,” the Democratic Progressive Party government has destroyed that trust and political foundation, Ma said.
“Therefore the ‘bridge for peace’ was closed down,” he said, adding that Tsai had distorted the meaning of the “consensus” to mislead people to believe it was equivalent to the “one country, two systems” framework.
The “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 government that both sides of the Strait acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.
Citing Tsai’s Double Ten National Day address last month, in which she said that Taiwan would not fear war nor would it seek it, Ma said: “We must be prepared for war, while making moves to avoid war, while seeking peace, thereby creating an advantageous situation for our side. War is not the way to solve problems.”
Ma said that for Tsai and Xi to meet, she must create a political foundation by agreeing to the “1992 consensus.”
“I hope that both sides can return to the original concept of the ‘1992 consensus,’ which would enable a meeting. I was the one who built up this ‘bridge for peace,’ in the hopes of guiding future leaders on both sides of the Taiwan Strait to walk along the ‘boulevard of peace,’” Ma said.
“I implore Tsai, if she cannot present an alternative policy, then she should accept the ‘1992 consensus,’ which can lead to negotiations for peace with China, and Taiwanese can live in peace,” he said.
In his address, Ma also called on China to stop military provocations against Taiwan with Chinese military aircraft incursions.
“Such moves will lead to more animosity from Taiwan, so I urge China to immediately stop such harassment,” he said. “I believe both China and the Tsai government should focus on reducing this tense situation across the Strait, and to take up concrete measures toward this goal.”
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