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Taiwan reiterates willingness for joint development South China Sea

Taiwan reiterates willingness for joint development South China Sea

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reiterated Taiwan’s willingness to put disputes aside and develop the South China Sea jointly with other territorial claimants, reports said Tuesday.
MOFA and the Ministry of National Defense are due to present their views on the issue at the Legislative Yuan Wednesday as China and the Philippines are squaring off about who owns the islands and reefs in the area.
Both countries have underlined their claims to an area known as the Scarborough Shoal west of the Philippine island of Luzon by sending boats. The South China Sea counts numerous unpopulated island groups which are claimed by China, Taiwan, Vietnam, the Philippines and Malaysia.
The MOFA report says all disputed islands belong to the Republic of China no matter whether one considers history, geography or international law. All neighboring countries should show restraint and chose negotiation over confrontation, MOFA said. A peaceful resolution to the disputes should be negotiated and joint development would be possible.
MOFA said its representative office in Manila had set up a taskforce to keep an eye on the situation in the Scarborough Shoal and to watch over anti-Chinese sentiment in the Philippines. The ministry was reportedly worried that the escalation of the territorial dispute might lead to action against ethnic Chinese, including Taiwanese residents.
The MND report said the military held regular inspections to improve the coast guard’s defense capabilities, according to guidelines established by the National Security Council.
MOFA also submitted a similar report to the Legislative Yuan about the Diaoyutai group of islands between Taiwan and Japan. The uninhabited rocks are currently controlled by Japan, which recently began giving them names while Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishihara launched a campaign to buy some of them for the capital.
MOFA underlined Taiwan’s sovereignty over the islands, which it sees as part of Ilan County. The MND said it would defend the rights of Taiwanese fishermen in the area and would never solve the issue by joining forces with China, which also claims the islands are its territory.


Updated : 2021-07-28 15:32 GMT+08:00