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China asks Taiwan government to rethink ban on certain scholars

2012/06/27 23:08:31

Beijing, June 27 (CNA) An official from China's Taiwan Affairs Office on Wednesday asked the Taiwan government to reconsider its decision to bar scholars affiliated with China's government from attending an upcoming conference in Taipei.

Fan Liqing, the office's spokeswoman, made the request following a decision by a Taiwan government agency a day earlier to bar Wang Zaixi, a scholar and vice president of Beijing's Association of Relations Across the Taiwan Straits, and the association's director Yu Jing from attending a conference to be held at National Taiwan University on June 29-30.

However, the Taiwan authorities permitted non-government affiliated scholars such as Yu Keli, director of the Institute of Taiwan Studies of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, to attend the conference designed for Taiwan and Chinese scholars to discuss and narrow their differences on a wide range of issues.

"These kinds of man-made measures that affect Taiwan-China exchanges are abnormal, and the reasons behind this decision is unconvincing," said Fan. "We hope Taiwan government agencies in charge of this matter can readjust their thinking."

Fan said Beijing hopes to promote a peaceful development in cross-Taiwan Strait relations through academic discussion, noting that academic exchanges are a normal cross-strait activity.

In addition, she pointed out Chinese scholars had applied for attendance through civilian and normal channels, and they had attended similar conferences in Taiwan before.

"Some Taiwan government agencies' decisions to prevent Chinese people from attending the conference are abnormal, and it is hoped these agencies can readjust their thinking by making cross-strait exchanges more convenient instead of more inconvenient," Fan said.

However, Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council pointed out, since the conference was an academic event, it recommended organizers "not to allow Chinese personnel with People's Liberation Army background or those involved in Taiwan affairs to attend the meeting."

The conference, organized by the Chinese Integration Association, has been put off for two weeks following the government decision not to allow Wang Zaixi and Yu Jing to attend.

(By Tsai Su-jung and C.J. Lin)