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Cablegate: Media Reaction: Cross-Strait Talks

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHIN #0812 1630927
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 110927Z JUN 08
FM AIT TAIPEI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9135
INFO RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 8352
RUEHHK/AMCONSUL HONG KONG 9585

UNCLAS AIT TAIPEI 000812

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EAP/TC, EAP/PA, EAP/PD - NIDA EMMONS
DEPARTMENT PASS AIT/WASHINGTON

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR KPAO TW
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: CROSS-STRAIT TALKS


Summary: Taiwan's major Chinese-language dailies focused June 11
news coverage on the talks between Taiwan's Straits Exchange
Foundation (SEF) and China's Association for Relations across the
Taiwan Strait (ARATS), which will formally kick off Thursday; on
South Korea's cabinet, which offered to resign Tuesday amid massive
street protests against the import of U.S. beef; and on a Taiwan
fishing boat, which sank off the Tiaoyutai islands after colliding
with a Japanese frigate Tuesday. In terms of editorials and
commentaries, an editorial in the pro-independence "Liberty Times"
strongly demanded that Taiwan's sovereignty be asserted during the
upcoming talks between SEF and ARATS. An analysis in the
pro-unification "United Daily News" also urged SEF Chairman Chiang
Pin-kun to express the Taiwan people's hope for 'reciprocity and
dignity' during his talks with ARATS. End summary.

A) "Results of [Cross-Strait] Talks Must Be Put through a Popular
Vote If They Endanger Taiwan's Sovereignty"

The pro-independence "Liberty Times" [circulation: 720,000]
editorialized (6/11):

"... In an attempt to maintain Taiwan's status as an independent
sovereign nation and to safeguard the common interests of the 23
million people in Taiwan, we demand that [Straits Exchange
Foundation Chairman] Chiang Pin-kun firmly stand by and defend
Taiwan's sovereignty status. He must never endorse any conclusion
or statement [reached with China] which secretly carries
self-disparaging [wording] such as "The One China Consensus,"
because only the 23 million people of Taiwan have the final say
about [Taiwan's] sovereignty. The process and results of the
[cross-Strait] talks must also be kept transparent, and there should
not be any secret deals. Should [both sides reach any agreement]
that will jeopardize Taiwan's sovereignty, the Taiwan government
should reject such a conclusion, or it should put the conclusion to
a popular vote so as to meet the principle that says 'sovereignty
lies in the hands of the people.' President Ma has emphasized more
than once that Taiwan's future must be determined by the 23 million
people in Taiwan. Hasn't he?

B) "Challenge for Chiang Pin-kun: What to Put on the New Page of
History?"

Journalist Li Chih-te wrote in the pro-unification "United Daily
News" [circulation: 400,000] (6/11):

"... The significance of [Straits Exchange Foundation Chairman]
Chiang Pin-kun's trip [for talks with China's Association for
Relations across the Taiwan Strait] will certainly not be limited to
signing the agreements on direct charter flights and opening Taiwan
to Chinese tourists. The resumption of 'systematic negotiations'
[between the two sides] is in reality the common objective pursued
by both sides of the Taiwan Strait in the wake of Taiwan's
presidential election in March. ...

"Such a historic opportunity -- offering resumption of
[cross-Strait] dialogue -- is both precious and fragile. Thus, the
mission shouldered by Chiang, besides concluding the already decided
agreements, also includes the heavy and major responsibility of
[helping to] 'define the nature' of future talks between the two
sides. Given the [amicable] climate for cross-Strait
reconciliation, there should be room for Chiang to express to the
Chinese leaders the Taiwan people's expectations of 'reciprocity and
dignity.' If Chiang fails on this part in the very beginning [of
the talks], [Taiwan] might have to pay a higher price if it wants to
do it next time in the future. ... What kind of [legacy] does
Chiang want to leave behind during this trip to Beijing? This is a
major issue closely related to his future status in history, and it
will be a key test of his wisdom."

WANG

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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