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Presidential Office denies electoral motives

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Presidential Office on Wednesday denied that electoral considerations had played a role in planning this weekend’s historical meeting between President Ma Ying-jeou and China’s President Xi Jinping in Singapore.
The opposition Democratic Progressive Party has accused the government of rushing ahead with plans for the summit in order to influence the January 16 presidential and legislative elections while keeping the public in the dark.
The aim of the Singapore meeting was to stabilize cross-straits peace and maintain the status quo, which bore no relation to the election campaign, said Presidential Office spokesman Charles Chen.
He also accused the DPP of taking on conflicting positions and of being guilty of double standards. It was the opposition party whose statements were motivated by electoral considerations, Chen said.
The presidential spokesman went back to the administration of President Chen Shui-bian to quote then-Mainland Affairs Council Minister Joseph Wu naming a meeting between the leaders of Taiwan and China as a necessary step to maintain eternal peace. According to Charles Chen, Wu, who now serves as DPP secretary-general, made the statement at the Legislative Yuan in 2005.
The opposition party was wrong to condemn the Ma-Xi meeting as an example of “black box” government, because the MAC would keep the Legislative Yuan informed by delivering reports both before and after Saturday’s event, Chen said.
The spokesman emphasized that Ma still stood by a promise made in 2011 that he would not discuss a peace agreement with Xi, would not visit China and would not within four years.
During the Chen Administration, the DPP president also expressed the hope of meeting with Chinese leaders, even inviting them to “have tea with him in Kinmen,” according to the presidential spokesman.
Ma will not sign any agreements, not make any promises, and not sign a joint communiqué with Xi, Chen said, emphasizing that all the president wanted was to further peace and stability, including trying to make meetings between leaders of both sides a regular occurrence.

Updated : 2021-09-22 01:38 GMT+08:00