Back to list

Xi revives old 'one China, two systems' model to woo Taiwan

2014/09/26 17:28:32

Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) and New Party Chairman Yok Mu-ming.

Beijing, Sept. 26 (CNA) Chinese President Xi Jinping brushed off an old formula to define how China intends to deal with "the Taiwan issue" and reiterated Friday that Beijing would have no tolerance for Taiwan independence.

"Peaceful unification and one country, two systems are our guiding principles in solving the Taiwan issue" and the "best way to realize national unification," Xi said during a meeting with a Taiwanese delegation led by pro-unification New Party Chairman Yok Mu-ming.

It is believed to be the first time that Xi publicly broached the "one country, two systems" formula to Taiwanese visitors since he became head of the Communist Party in late 2012.

China has used the concept in dealing with Hong Kong, and it has been part of Chinese rhetoric on Taiwan since Deng Xiaoping first advanced the idea in the 1980s.

The model has never been popular in self-governed Taiwan in which the overwhelming majority of people have no interest in the idea of unification with Beijing or formulas like "one country, two systems" that would undermine its sovereignty.

Aware of this resistance to the model, Xi said its implementation will "fully consider the actual situation in Taiwan and listen to views and suggestions from both sides of the Taiwan Strait, and will be an arrangement that will fully take care of the interests of Taiwanese compatriots."

Yok relayed several of Xi's comments to the media after the meeting, which lasted for about an hour, but China's official Xinhua News Agency later issued the full text of the Chinese leader's remarks.

Xi said that on major issues related to national unification and the long-term development of Chinese people, "our stance is firm and there will be no compromise or wavering."

He noted that both sides of the Taiwan Strait have yet to unify after the civil war in 1949, but the fact that both belong to the same one China "has never changed, and will never change."

Xi stressed no tolerance "for deeds to splinter the country," noting that history has proved and will continue to prove that Taiwan independence will not work.

He also said that "peaceful unification of both sides of the Taiwan Strait is an end to bilateral confrontation and not a restructuring of sovereignty or land."

He said that bilateral relations are moving along the course of peaceful development since 2008, and although both sides currently face new situations and problems, "the trend of continuing to move forward will not change."

Xi said the pursuit of national unification is not just a form, but more importantly the "union of minds of peoples on the two sides."

The mainland knows the mentality of Taiwanese people formed through past history and a different social environment and respects the social system and living style chosen by them, Xi said.

It would like to narrow the psychological gap with sincerity and good will, Xi said, but added that Taiwanese people also need to learn and understand the feelings and mindset of 1.3 billion compatriots, and respect their choices.

After the meeting, Yok relayed Xi's comments without offering his own view on what Xi said and also noted that Xi did not touch on the issue of a possible meeting with President Ma Ying-jeou or Taiwan's local elections to be held on Nov.29.

Ma has hoped that a meeting with the Chinese leader could take place at the APEC leaders' meeting scheduled in Beijing in November.

(By Lawrence Chiu and Lilian Wu)

●Sept. 26: 'One country, two systems' formula not acceptable: Taiwan