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DPP needs to clarify its China policy: ex-AIT official

DPP needs to clarify its China policy: ex-AIT official

Washington, March 20 (CNA) A former official of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) urged Taiwan's opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Friday to clarify its China policy before the island's next presidential election in 2016, to ease public skepticism. DPP Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen -- who is expected to again be her party's candidate in 2016 -- will have the chance to elucidate her stance again when she visits Washington D.C. later this year, former AIT Managing Director Barbara Schrage said during a discussion on U.S.-Taiwan relations held by the Heritage Foundation. If Tsai cannot present something new, she will not be able to pass the test easily, Schrage said. She recalled that Tsai was unable to clear up Washington's doubts about her China policy when she visited the United States in September 2011 as the DPP's candidate for the 2012 presidential election. "What the administration wanted to hear was what was her specific plan for dealing with the cross-strait issue. And frankly she was very disappointing in that area," Schrage said. She said the DPP does not necessarily have to accept the "1992 consensus," but it should find ways to narrow its differences with Beijing. Under the consensus reached that year between Chinese and Taiwanese quasi-governmental negotiators, the two sides agree there is only one China, with each side free to interpret what that China constitutes. Beijing is strongly opposed to the idea that there are two Chinas, as that would suggest Taiwan -- the Republic of China -- was not a part of the concept of one China. "The important thing, I think, is that the DPP demonstrates that it understands the seriousness of the issue, that it can't simply duck the issue, and it tries to find ways to come up with a formula that will meet, to some extent, the concerns of China, the concerns of the United States and the concerns of the people of Taiwan, who clearly favor stability," she added. She stressed that Tsai needs to let people know in advance how she will deal with cross-strait relations if elected. (By Tony Liao and Y.F. Low)


Updated : 2021-02-26 21:00 GMT+08:00