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President Ma mentions 'Republic of China' in meeting with Xi

2015/11/07 22:13

Taipei, Nov. 7 (CNA) President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said that he mentioned the Republic of China, the formal name of Taiwan, during an unprecedented meeting with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping (習近平) in Singapore Saturday.

Speaking at a news conference after the meeting, Ma said that he mentioned the term "the Republic of China" while addressing his administration's stance on the "1992 consensus."

The consensus refers to a tacit understanding reached in 1992 in Hong Kong between Taipei and Beijing on how to characterize relations between the two sides -- that there is only one China, with each side free to interpret what "one China" means.

The Ma administration has maintained that "China" refers to the Republic of China.

In response to reporters' questions, Ma said that the 1992 consensus "does not involve two Chinas, one China and one Taiwan, or Taiwan independence" because this is against "the ROC Constitution."

During the meeting with Xi, "I made this clear and made every effort to maintain this stance, as an ROC president should do," Ma said.

Ma also stressed that Taiwan will continue to consolidate the 1992 consensus to preserve peace and prosperity in the Taiwan Strait.

According to an anonymous source, it was the first time that a person from Taiwan had mentioned the terms "the ROC" and "the ROC Constitution" in the face of the top leader of China.

The Ma-Xi meeting, which was held behind closed doors in Singapore, was the first-ever between the leaders of the ROC and the People's Republic of China.

The PRC was founded in 1949 after the end of the Chinese civil war, won by the communists over the Nationalists, who moved the seat of the ROC government to Taiwan.

Despite warmer ties across the Taiwan Strait in recent years, China still does not recognize Taiwan as a country and sees it as a renegade province to be reunified with the Chinese mainland.

(By Hsieh Chia-chen and Elaine Hou) ENDITEM/J