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Lai urges Beijing to recognize ROC, calls for dialogue at inauguration

05/20/2024 12:42 PM
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President Lai Ching-te. CNA photo May 20, 2024
President Lai Ching-te. CNA photo May 20, 2024

Taipei, May 20 (CNA) President Lai Ching-te (賴清德) called on Beijing to acknowledge Taiwan's government and engage in dialogue with Taipei in his inaugural address on Monday, saying that both sides are responsible for promoting peace in the Taiwan Strait.

"I hope that China will face the reality of the Republic of China's existence" and "in good faith...engage in cooperation with the legal government chosen by Taiwan's people," Lai said in front of the Presidential Office building in Taipei.

He advocated for dialogue based on the principles of equality and dignity, as well as exchanges between the two sides, instead of confrontation and containment.

Lai reaffirmed that his government would adhere to former President Tsai Ing-wen's (蔡英文) policy toward China and work to maintain the status quo.

(Click here to read an updated story)

The newly sworn-in president called on Beijing, however, to cease its political and military intimidation of Taiwan and fulfill its obligation to uphold stability in the Taiwan Strait and surrounding regions so as to "ensure the world is free from fear of war."

If national leaders prioritize the well-being of their people, they will share the common goals of maintaining peace in the Taiwan Strait and promoting mutual benefit, he said.

Lai suggested that the two sides could start "from the resumption of tourism on a reciprocal basis, and enrollment of degree students in Taiwanese institutions."

(By Teng Pei-ju)

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