The administration of former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) exchanged Taiwan’s sovereignty and dignity for an invitation to the World Health Assembly (WHA), Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Wang Ting-yu (王定宇) said yesterday, adding that his was far inferior to the administration of President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文).
Earlier yesterday, Ma wrote on Facebook that Tsai should consider relaunching cross-strait negotiations, as mutual trust across the Tawain Strait had been the key to his administration being invited to the WHA every year.
Ma’s participation in international affairs is akin to “gouging out your eyes to cure myopia,” Wang said.
Photo: Tu Chien-jung, Taipei Times
“If we cannot uphold our claims to sovereignty, who would we represent, even if we were to participate in international organizations?” he asked.
Taiwan’s recent interactions with the international community are unprecedented and its visibility on the international stage has grown, he said.
It is a difficult path to insist that Taiwan’s participation in the international community be done without demeaning the nation and being forced to defend its sovereignty, but it is the right path, Wang said.
Taiwanese know whether Ma’s form of international participation — currying favor with China while fearing to defend national sovereignty — was good or bad.
During his eight years of governance, Taiwan’s economy declined and national defense capabilities shrank, Wang said, adding that Ma is Taiwan’s least-liked president.
Wang said that Ma should compare the two administrations in terms of stock market performance and paying national debt.
The Ma administration would lag in every department, he said.
DPP Legislator Hsu Chih-chieh (許智傑) cited a 2011 incident in which WikiLeaks uncovered American Institute in Taiwan documents showing that China and the WHO in 2005 signed a secret memorandum of understanding that said Taiwan would be referred to as “Taiwan, China.”
Former WHO director-general Margaret Chan’s (陳馮富珍) office in September 2010 issued an internal memo to all member states listing Taiwan as a province of China, Hsu said.
Taiwan’s participation in the WHA as a “province of China” is not what Taiwanese want, he said.
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