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Siew-Kerry meeting at APEC boosts Taiwan-U.S. ties: President Ma

Siew-Kerry meeting at APEC boosts Taiwan-U.S. ties: President Ma

Taipei, Oct. 22 (CNA) President Ma Ying-jeou said Tuesday that the meeting earlier this month between the United States and Taiwan's envoys to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit was of great importance to relations between the two countries. It was the second consecutive year that the representatives of the two governments met on the sidelines of the APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting, Ma said, while receiving a U.S. delegation from the National Association of Attorneys General. During their meeting, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Taiwan's former Vice President Vincent Siew engaged in deep discussions on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Ma said. The meeting was highly important, the president said, noting that the Republic of China's (ROC's) relations with the U.S. have improved significantly over the past five years. Their bilateral ties over that period have been the most stable in decades and the ROC (Taiwan) has maintained security cooperation with the U.S., Ma said. As a peace-loving country, the ROC has achieved some major positive results in settling international disputes over the past year, the president said. For instance, the country has made progress in its efforts to peacefully resolve a 40-year dispute with Japan over fishing in waters around the Diaoyutai Islands, with the signing of a bilateral fisheries agreement in April, Ma said. In addition, after three months of negotiations, Taiwan and the Philippines reached an agreement in August to settle a row over an incident on May 9, in which a Taiwanese fisherman was shot dead by Philippine coastguard officers in an overlapping exclusive economic zone of the two countries, Ma said. He said his government's approach to resolving territorial disputes in the South China Sea and the East China Sea is based on the concept that "sovereignty cannot be divided, but resources can be shared." This concept is aimed at preserving regional peace and improving ties among the countries involved in disputes, he said. The president also pointed out that relations between Taiwan and mainland China have improved significantly over the past five years. Ma also expressed gratitude to the U.S. for supporting the ROC's participation in international events. The ROC was one of the founding members of the United Nations but lost its seat to the People's Republic of China in 1971, which made it difficult for the ROC to join specialized U.N. agencies and activities, Ma said However, after he took office, Taiwan was admitted to the annual World Health Assembly in the name of Chinese Taipei as an observer in 2009 and was invited to attend the 38th International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Assembly as a guest this year, the president noted. (By Kelvin Huang and Y.L. Kao)


Updated : 2021-05-09 22:06 GMT+08:00