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Taiwan committed to free and open Indo-Pacific: President Tsai

2019/01/21 21:04:39

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文, front, right) and Richard Haass (front, left)

Taipei, Jan. 21 (CNA) As a responsible member of the international community, Taiwan is committed to a free and open Indo-Pacific, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said Monday at the Presidential Office in Taipei.

Speaking at a meeting with Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, a New York-based U.S. think tank, Tsai said Taiwan has the courage needed to face challenges and uphold the values of democracy and freedom.

Speaking on cross-strait relations, Tsai said Taiwan has never opposed cross-strait interaction and exchange. In contrast, China once again reiterated not to abandon the use of force to ensure reunification with Taiwan.

To that end, Tsai again stressed that Taiwan will never accept the "one country, two systems" formula as that is the consensus across the country.

The formula was mentioned at the start of the year in Chinese President Xi Jinping's (習近平) comments delivered on Jan. 2 during an address to commemorate the 40th anniversary of China's "Message to Compatriots in Taiwan."

In his speech, Xi also called for unification under the "one country, two systems" formula and defined the 1992 consensus as being based on the "one China" principle.

In response, Tsai said the same day that she has never accepted the so-called "1992 consensus" and would never do so because it is tantamount to the "one China, two systems" formula devised by China to bring Taiwan under its control.

Taiwan stands on the front line of safeguarding democracy and freedom, Tsai said, adding that the current generation of Taiwanese has an historical mission to maintain Taiwan's democracy regardless of threats.

"I believe that the more vulnerable you act in front of a bully, the more arrogant they will be," Tsai said.

More and more international friends, are speaking out in support of Taiwan in the global community because they recognize that only by defending the beacon of democracy that is Taiwan, is there hope for democracy and freedom in Asia, Tsai pointed out.

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文, right) and Richard Haass (left)

(By Wen Kuei-hsiang and William Yen)
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