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Tsai emphasizes Taiwan Consensus
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-01-10 03:54 PM
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Taiwan Consensus reached by the Democratic Progressive Party will help distinguish the party from the ruling Kuomintang, former opposition leader Tsai Ing-wen said Friday.

On Thursday, the DPP presented the concluding document of months of meetings and discussions about the updating of its China policies. Its China Affairs Committee spent more than two hours discussing the report, but did not come up with any major changes beyond emphasizing more contacts between think tanks and local governments in Taiwan and China.

In an online statement, Tsai said the DPP should stay close to mainstream opinion, and the Taiwan Consensus was an example which could be accepted by the majority of the public in the country. During her bid for the presidency in 2012, she had mentioned “Taiwan is the Republic of China and the Republic of China is Taiwan,” a formula which was acceptable for a majority of citizens, she said.

The Taiwan Consensus could form the basis for the DPP’s policies and help to distinguish itself from the KMT, Tsai explained. The ruling camp would no longer be able to accuse the DPP of harming the sovereignty of Taiwan or of the Republic of China, she added.

The party first needed to reach an internal consensus before it could expand to a larger Taiwan Consensus, she said. The conclusions of Thursday’s China Affairs Committee meeting would serve as a basis for more thorough discussions at an opportune time, Tsai advised.

A DPP spokesman described Thursday’s report as only the first step in a long process, with other ideas welcome to be discussed on future occasions.

China condemned the DPP’s stance, saying its insistence on Taiwan Independence and its emphasis on national security would continue to harm cross-straits relations.

Former Premier Frank Hsieh complained Friday about the absence of his own proposal for a “constitutional consensus” in the DPP document. Hsieh has been emphasizing the importance of the Republic of China Constitution for more than a year as he says that Taiwan and China should accept the other side having a Constitution of its own which did not affect each other.

He told reporters Friday that the 6,000-character DPP conclusion had avoided the issue, only mentioning the Constitution once. The former premier also accused the party of having failed to clarify its China policy.

Hsieh claimed an internal DPP poll had found that only 27 percent of the public was satisfied with the opposition party’s cross-straits policies, while the KMT received an approval rating of 35 percent for its policies. He said he had launched his “constitutional consensus” theory in order to win the support of 60 percent of Taiwanese and thus achieving a majority.

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