Taiwan thanks Philippine president for cross-strait peace appeal

09/25/2022 03:39 PM
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Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. Photo courtesy of the office of Marcos Jr.
Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. Photo courtesy of the office of Marcos Jr.

Taipei, Sept. 25 (CNA) Taiwan's government has thanked Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. for his speech in New York on Friday in which he appealed for a peaceful solution to the situation across the Taiwan Strait.

In a press release Sunday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said Taiwan remained grateful that the Philippine leader is paying attention to cross-strait peace and stability.

This shows that Beijing's intensifying military provocations in the region, in particular since August, have raised the concerns of nearby countries, MOFA said.

MOFA called on the international community to condemn what it called China's unilateral actions in destabilizing the cross-strait status quo, and to jointly prevent the expansion of authoritarianism in the region.

In his speech at a meeting of the Asia Society, Marcos Jr. said the Philippines' candidacy for a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council for 2027-2028 is "premised on my country's long years of experience in building peace and forging new paths of cooperation."

"In this context, we are certainly concerned about rising tensions in the Taiwan Strait, just north of the Philippines," he said.

Though he reiterated Manila's adherence to its one-China policy that sees the People's of Republic of China (PRC) and not the Republic of China, Taiwan's official name, as the only China in the world, Marcos Jr. said his country has always called for the peaceful resolution of issues involving Taiwan.

"We urge all parties involved to exercise maximum restraint. Dialogue and diplomacy must prevail," he said during his speech.

During a question and answer session, Marcos Jr. was asked by Kevin Rudd, president and CEO of the Asia Society, about his country's future relations with Japan.

The Philippine leader answered by saying that he had just met with Japanese Fumio Kishida and they discussed a number of issues, including Taiwan.

"I think it's no surprise to anyone that they are terribly, terribly concerned not only of China but because of the recent events, we have focused on the Taiwan situation," he said.

"The visit of the United States House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan sort of highlighted once again the simmering tensions that as I said were beneath the surface but now have surfaced out into the open."

Tensions over Taiwan between Washington and Beijing were heightened after Pelosi's visit to Taiwan in early August, which was followed by large-scale Chinese military drills to show Beijing's displeasure and then a pledge by U.S. President Joe Biden to defend Taiwan in the event of a Chinese invasion.

China has accused America of abandoning its commitment to its one-China policy and promoting formal Taiwan independence, and it has vowed to push for "reunification" with Taiwan, using force if necessary.

(By Joseph Yeh)


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