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Taiwan cancels Hakka event in Mauritius due to Chinese oppression

2018/02/25 17:35:52

Image taken from Pixabay

Taipei, Feb. 25 (CNA) The Hakka Affairs Council (HAC) on Sunday condemned the Chinese bullying that led to the decision to cancel a scheduled Hakka cuisine promotion set to be held in Mauritius next week.

The Mauritius event was part of a two-year "Hakka Cuisine Touring Workshop" organized by the council, said HAC deputy chief Yiong Cong-ziin (楊長鎮).

The workshop involves sending six chefs skilled in Taiwanese Hakka dishes to visit major cities on six continents in 2017 and 2018 to pass on 10 must-eat Hakka dishes to promote Hakka culture, and the Mauritius leg was scheduled to be held from Feb. 28 to March 7.

The HAC was informed on Saturday, however, that the Chinese embassy in Mauritius asked the hotel in Mauritius hosting the HAC event to cancel it because the organizer on the workshop's promotional brochures was identified as Hakka Affairs Council of the Republic of China, according to Yiong.

The Republic of China is Taiwan's official name. Beijing does not recognize Taiwan's sovereignty and objects to any symbols that suggest it is an independent country.

Chinese embassy representatives even threatened to ask the government of Mauritius to bar the Taiwanese delegation from entering the country once it arrived, Yiong said.

"We very much regret that this cultural exchange is being interpreted by China as a political move," Yiong said, describing Beijing's move as inappropriate and impolite to both Taiwan and Mauritius.

Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council and Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) also condemned Beijing for its oppression.

"China's foreign ministry should be held responsible for such a gesture, which will lead more Taiwanese to have negative feelings toward China and further hurt cross-strait relations," the MOFA statement said.

(By Joseph Yeh)