Thursday, August 2, 2007

Comments on Taiwan’s UN Referendum Plan and Cross-Strait Relations (Part I)

First of all, we must condemn the UN’s Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for rejecting President Chen’s request for Taiwan to join the UN. Unfortunately, Ban’s decision not only violates the basic rights of the 23 million Taiwanese, but also transforms himself into China’s inauspicious accomplice.

According to the UN Charter as well as the procedural rules of the General Assembly and the Security Council, Ban Ki-moon cannot reject Taiwan’s request through a “self-presumption” without collective consultation. Article 4 of the UN Charter clearly states that 1) Membership in the United Nations is open to all other peace-loving states which accept the obligations contained in the present Charter and, in the judgment of the Organization, are able and willing to carry these obligations, and 2) The admission of any such state to membership in the United Nations will be affected by a decision of the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council. There is no doubt that Taiwan is a peace-loving state and willing to abide by the UN Charter; furthermore, Taiwan is an important international member and meets all the conditions to join the UN. At any rate, it is the Security Council and the General Assembly that should be the authority of reviewing Taiwan’s UN bid. Thus, Ban Ki-moon has no right to make a unilateral decision ignoring the collective rights of the 23 million Taiwanese people.

According to Rule 58 of the Provisional Rules of Procedures of the UN Security Council, any state which desires to become a member of the UN shall submit an application to the Secretary-General. Also, Rule 59 addresses that the Secretary-General shall immediately place the application for membership before the representatives of the Security Council and within that month, an investigative committee must be established. Based on these rules, Ban Ki-moon did not have any right to reject Taiwan’s application; instead, he should have handed Taiwan’s application to the Security Council representatives.

Additionally, the UN Office of Legal Affairs by quoting General Assembly Resolution 2758 to decline dealing with Taiwan’s application is absolutely absurd. In my view, in the future the UN’s Office of the Legal Counsel should change its name to the “China Control Counsel.”

If we examine this matter carefully, the UN General Assembly Resolution 2758 states: “The General Assembly considering the restoration of the lawful rights of the People’s Republic of China; recognizing that the representatives of the Government of the People’s Republic of China are the only lawful representatives of China to the United Nations; decides to expel forthwith the representatives of Chiang Kai-shek from the place which they unlawfully occupy at the United Nations and in all the organizations related to it.” Obviously, this resolution only solves the lawful representation issue of the People’s Republic of China in the UN. In reality, the resolution does not solve the representation of the 23 million Taiwanese people, not to mention that it never states that Taiwan is part of China!

Secretary-General Ban’s action totally violates the principle of administrative neutrality and misinterprets the UN resolution. For him to abandon administrative neutrality must have been because he received tremendous Chinese pressure, becoming a puppet under Chinese control. We are certain that if China did not oppose Taiwan to join the UN, the entire world would not oppose either. We might sympathize with the unfavorable situation of Secretary-General Ban, but we surely cannot excuse China’s unreasonable bullying.

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