Friday, August 3, 2007

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

A public survey conducted in April this year showed that more than 70% of the Taiwanese supported to use the name of “Taiwan” to join the UN, so the Taiwan government’s policy has soundly reflected the popular opinion. Even though China keeps putting pressure on the UN’s secretary-general, Taiwan’s desire to join the UN has certainly become a by-partisan consensus.

China cannot forever ignore the 23 million Taiwanese people’s determination to survive in the international arena. I would argue that the PRC government misuses the international community to bully Taiwan because it is afraid to face the reality—that is, Taiwan is already a sovereign state and both sides of the Taiwan Strait have mutual non-jurisdiction. By escalating tensions in the Taiwan Strait, China endangers regional peace and stability; its overbearing actions once again show that China is the troublemaker.

For a long time, China has continuously employed the “One China” principle to eliminate Taiwan and to create confusions in the international community, so that they can carry out Chinese hegemony in foreign affairs. By using all kinds of methods, China has already caused considerable damage to the basic rights of the 23 million Taiwanese people, and this has also forced Taiwan to cope with the crisis of China’s “gradual annexation.”

It is legitimate for Taiwan’s people to express their wish to seek for survival and development through the democratic means such as referendum. The referendum using the name of Taiwan to join the UN is meant to stand against China’s bullying of Taiwan internationally. In so doing, Taiwan will be able to have a valid voice in the international arena. Moreover, the referendum will also manifest China’s uncivilized actions for isolating Taiwan in international community, and to a great extent it can eradicate the “One China” framework as well. Lastly, it can be a pushing factor for the international community to truly understand the reality of Taiwan’s democratic achievement and demand for more international participations.

According to some scholar experts, the Chinese government has been extremely anxious about the referendum of using Taiwan as the official name to join the UN. It has been reported that the PRC government considers the pan-green camp to be very stubborn while the pan-blues unreliable, and believes that the Taiwanese people are ungrateful and military threats are ineffective. However, the Taiwanese people also feel extremely frustrated, since China keeps isolating Taiwan internationally, taking away Taiwan’s diplomatic allies, obstructing Taiwan from joining international organizations and even more, continually lowering Taiwan’s status whenever Taiwan makes efforts to participate in international events.

These are all no-win results for both sides, unfortunately. We sincerely hope that the Chinese government can face the reality that Taiwan, the Republic of China, is sovereign and independent, and that the cross-strait has mutual non-jurisdiction. We also hope that China can issue a plan of cross-strait mutual co-existence and prosperity, and both sides can establish a hopeful transitional arrangement based upon a pragmatic discussion, so as to resolve the cross-strait political discrepancy as well as to create a win-win situation for both China and Taiwan.

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