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Mutual trust first, then cross-strait peace agreement: MAC

Mutual trust first, then cross-strait peace agreement: MAC

Taipei, Dec. 31 (CNA) Signing a peace agreement and building a mechanism for military exchanges with China should come after the two sides develop trust with each other, Taiwan's Cabinet-level Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said Wednesday in a statement.
The statement said that forging mutual trust is an issue that must be resolved immediately, as well as those concerning cross-Taiwan Strait talks and economic and cultural exchanges between the two sides.
Settling the issues will establish a solid foundation for Taiwan and China to build their trust with each other, the MAC said.
The council, which coordinates Taiwan's policy toward China, released the statement in response to an address by Chinese President Hu Jintao in Beijing earlier in the day to mark the 30th anniversary of a message from China to "compatriots in Taiwan" that called for reunification of the two sides by peaceful means.
Stating that the mainland and Taiwan belong to a nation of China, Hu said the two sides will develop mutual trust politically once they form a common consensus and uphold the same stance on the problem that concerns how to maintain the "One China" principle.
Once such a consensus is reached, Hu said: "Anything in the talks can easily reach an agreement." Hu also called for a military dialogue with Taiwan, saying "the two sides can pick the right time to engage in exchanges on military issues and explore setting up a military and security mechanism to build mutual trust." This would help "improve the situation in the Taiwan Strait and lessen military and security concerns" he said in a speech broadcast live on Chinese national television.
In response, the MAC reiterated that Taiwan's government has been devoted to pushing for cross-strait exchanges in an active and goodwill manner since President Ma Ying-jeou took office May 20.
Cross-strait relations have improved, with the signing of agreements that are beneficial to people of the two sides through systemized talks between two intermediary bodies -- Taiwan's Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) and China's Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS), the MAC statement said, referring to four significant agreements signed in November to widely expand cross-strait transport, trade and postal connections.
The MAC called for continuing the "positive interactions" based on the principle of "setting aside controversial disputes and seeking a win-win situation." It reiterated that under the Constitution of the Republic of China, Taiwan will pursue a policy of maintaining the state quo in the strait. This means Taiwan will not seek unification, independence or wage wars against China, according to the MAC.
The government of Taiwan will continue the cross-strait policy that it believes is in tune with mainstream public opinion, the MAC said.
It suggested that cross-strait issues be promoted step by step through the systemized SEF-ARATS negotiation mechanism based on the principles of "equality and dignity." The MAC also urged Beijing to understand Taiwan people's need and desire to join the international community, expanding the idea of peace to cross-strait interactions on the international, military and political levels.
(By Elizabeth Hsu)




Updated : 2021-03-03 20:41 GMT+08:00