Democratic Progressive Party legislators Su Chen-ching, Pan Men-an and Tsai Chi-chang, left to right, hold a press conference yesterday at the legislature in Taipei accusing President Ma Ying-jeou of selling out Taiwan’s sovereignty. Photo: Fang Pin-chao, Taipei Times.
By Chris Wang, Taipei Times, March 27, 2012 —
OUT OF THE LOOP: Lai Shin-yuan and Tsai Der-sheng told the legislature that they were not consulted nor briefed on Wu Poh-hsiung’s trip to Beijing last week
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) and the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) are reverting Taiwan to a single-party state with their ill-conceived proposal that cross-strait relations be conducted under the concept of “one country, two areas (一國兩區),” Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers said yesterday.
Mainland Affairs Council Minister Lai Shin-yuan (賴幸媛) and National Security Bureau (NSB) Director-General Tsai Der-sheng (蔡得勝) said in the legislature yesterday that they were not consulted nor briefed on former KMT chairman Wu Poh-hsiung’s (吳伯雄) trip to Beijing, where Wu made the proposal to Chinese President Hu Jintao (胡錦濤) on Thursday.
“The controversy reflects a dysfunctional administration, with party officials making major political statements for the government,” DPP Legislator Tuan Yi-kang (段宜康) said.
Ma, who Tuan said had -authorized Wu to make the proposal, also breached his pledge that he would consult the opposition on major national issues.
In response, Lai said Wu did not express a new position on cross-strait relations, since the proposal is in line with the Constitution and the Act Governing Relations Between the Peoples of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (台灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例).
While Lai said that the rhetoric of “one country, two areas” was an oversimplification of a complex initiative, she added that it did not signal Taiwan was ready to engage in political talks with China.
Tsai said there had been no official response from Beijing and he did not think it would address the proposal any time soon.
“I really don’t think the four-word initiative is that serious, since it was only a proposal,” Tsai said.
While it was “perhaps not a good time for the government to touch upon the sensitive issue,” Tsai said, any non-government initiative and discussion to explore possible solutions should be encouraged, because the development of bilateral relations should continue.
DPP Legislator Kuan Bi-ling (管碧玲) countered that the proposal ignored the Constitution and undermined the longstanding principle of “creative ambiguity” in Taiwan’s dealings with China.
The most dangerous implication in Wu’s remark was not the initiative, but his comment right after the proposal when he said that cross-strait relations were not a state-to-state relationship, but a special relationship, DPP Legislator Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) said.
“Because that implied the Republic of China is extinct,” Lin said.
DPP Legislator Hsu Tain-tsair (許添財) questioned why Ma unilaterally decided to propose the initiative when there was no Chinese pressure.
“In my opinion, the move is not helpful to peaceful development across the [Taiwan] Strait anyway,” Hsu said.
DPP Legislator Pan Men-an (潘孟安) told a press conference earlier that the Act Governing Relations Between the Peoples of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area was enacted to deal with people-to-people exchanges and not the issue of Taiwan’s sovereignty.
KMT lawmakers also took shots at the Ma administration, with Chiang Chi-chen (江啟臣) questioning why it made such a proposal when it maintains that it would engage Beijing under the so-called “1992 consensus” and “one China with different interpretations.”
KMT Legislator Chi Kuo-tung (紀國棟) said the KMT was “looking for trouble” with the proposal, as all sovereignty-related disputes should be set aside for now because the “time is not right”. . . .
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