KMT angered by Japan's Diaoyutai Islands name change

KMT official criticizes President Tsai, Taiwanese representative to Japan for remaining silent over change to islands' name

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KMT Culture and Communications Chairperson Wang Yu-min

KMT Culture and Communications Chairperson Wang Yu-min (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ishigaki City Council in Japan's Okinawa Prefecture on Monday (June 22) approved legislation to change the administrative designation of the disputed Diaoyutai Islands from Tonoshiro to Tonoshiro Senkaku, prompting Taiwan's Kuomintang (KMT) party to wonder why Frank Hsieh (謝長廷), the Taiwanese representative to Japan, had not challenged the move.

The KMT on Monday said on Facebook that when the U.S. transferred jurisdiction of the Diaoyutai Islands to Japan in 1971, the Taiwanese government at that time did not protest. Meanwhile, KMT Culture and Communications Chairperson Wang Yu-min (王育敏) criticized Hsieh for not doing “the right thing” and instead only mentioning the past, which she said was “simply avoiding responsibility,” Liberty Times reported.

Wang expressed that there is no need to discuss the historical context of the islands. Lambasting Hsieh, she remarked, “You are getting your salary from the Republic of China but acting like a representative to Japan. You should act to defend the territory of the Republic of China.”

She continued that in the future, the KMT would request for Hsieh to return to Taiwan. Wang also criticized President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) for only issuing written statements rather than holding a formal press conference to express Taiwan’s position on the Diaoyutai Islands to the outside world.

She went on to say: “Tsai Ing-wen claims to be a 'spicy Taiwanese girl,' but she is weak and obsequious to Japan and doesn't dare to speak up.” Wang concluded by saying that Tsai has several things to do in regard to the Diaoyutai Islands issue: summon Japanese representatives in Taiwan to express her dissatisfaction, recall Hsieh to explain Taiwan’s protestations to Japan, and respond to the KMT’s determination to defend Taiwan's sovereignty over the islands.