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Wang-Zhang meeting embodies mutual non-denial: Ma

2013/10/06 22:02:45

Taipei, Oct. 6 (CNA) President Ma Ying-jeou expressed gratification after top cross-strait affairs officials from Taiwan and China met and addressed each other by their official titles, Presidential Office spokeswoman Garfie Li said Sunday.

"President Ma said such moves exemplify how the two sides do not deny each other's authority to govern," she said.

The statement referred to an unprecedented encounter between Wang Yu-chi, minister of Taiwan's Cabinet-level Mainland Affairs Council, and Zhang Zhijun, minister of the Taiwan Affairs Office under China's State Council, that took place in Bali, Indonesia earlier in the day.

Citing President Ma, Li said the Wang-Zhang meeting marks a good start for normalizing official interactions across the Taiwan Strait, and it serves as an important milestone for the institutionalization of bilateral relations.

In their groundbreaking meeting, Wang and Zhang spoke briefly at the lobby of Hotel Laguna, where the Chinese delegation to the 2013 leaders' meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum is staying.

The Wang-Zhang rendezvous came on the heels of a meeting between Vincent Siew, a former vice president who is representing Taiwan at the APEC leaders' summit, and China's President Xi Jinping.

Because of China's objections, Taiwan's president has been barred from attending the annual APEC summit and has to appoint a proxy each year.

The APEC leaders' meeting will open Oct. 7 for a two-day run that will cap the APEC leaders week which started Oct. 1.

(By Jay Chou and Sofia Wu)