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Ma-Xi meet signals Beijing's recognition of Taiwan government: expert

Taipei, Nov. 4 (CNA) Beijing has agreed that the meeting between President Ma Ying-jeou (???) and Chinese President Xi Jinping (???) in Singapore on Saturday will be held on an equal footing, which indicates China's recognition that there is a government in Taiwan, Lin Chong-pin (???), a former vice chairman of Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council, said Wednesday. Ma and Xi will address each other as "mister" in the historic meeting, marking a breakthrough in face-to-face exchanges and communication between the two leaders across the Taiwan Strait after all the twists and turns since Taiwan and China split at the end of the Chinese civil war in 1949. This shows Beijing's recognition of the Taiwanese government, said Lin, a China affairs expert. China's agreement with the meeting's format and venue can also be seen as an embodiment of the "one country, two governments" concept proposed by some people in Taiwan and China, he said. The pressing territorial issues in the South China Sea have prompted Beijing to reconsider its position on a meeting between Ma and Xi, Lin said. Furthermore, Lin said, the Chinese government's distrust of Taiwan's main opposition Democratic Progressive Party, which is looking to win the 2016 presidential election, also prodded Beijing to revisit the idea of a Ma-Xi meeting. It will be the first meeting between the leaders of the two sides of the Taiwan Strait since the government of the Republic of China relocated to Taiwan in 1949, Lin noted. It shows that the Chinese authorities have finally recognized that "we are a government," he added. The scheduled meeting between Xi and Ma, in their capacity as "leaders of the two sides" of the strait will not only represent a major breakthrough in cross-strait relations but may also impact on the dynamics in East Asia and the rest of the world, Lin said. (By S.J. Tsai and Evelyn Kao)

Updated : 2021-09-20 13:35 GMT+08:00