- Title: Taiwan president calls on China to engage in talks
- Date: 10th October 2016
- Summary: TAIPEI, TAIWAN (OCTOBER 10, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF NATIONAL DEFENCE MARCHING BAND PERFORMING GUESTS SEATED ON STAGE NATIONAL DEFENCE MARCHING BAND PERFORMING MILITARY OFFICERS SEATED AND LOOKING ON VARIOUS OF NATIONAL DEFENCE MARCHING BAND PERFORMING SIGN ON TOWER OF PRESIDENTIAL OFFICE READING (Chinese): "CELEBRATING THE 105TH NATIONAL DAY OF THE REPUBLIC OF CHINA" TAIWAN PRESIDENT TSAI ING-WEN WALKING TOWARDS PODIUM
- Embargoed: 25th October 2016 06:36
- Keywords: China Taiwan cross-strait relation peace talks
- Location: TAIPEI, TAIWAN
- City: TAIPEI, TAIWAN
- Country: Taiwan
- Topics: Diplomacy/Foreign Policy,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA00153F8AX1
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen on Monday (October 10) called on China to engage in talks, pledging to maintain peace with the island's giant neighbour, amid a near five-month political impasse after Beijing halted official communication with the self-ruled island.
However, Tsai, in her first National Day speech, stopped short of conceding a crucial principle that Beijing has said is needed for talks to resume, that Taiwan is a part of China, also referred to between the two sides as the "1992 consensus".
Tsai's proponents have said she has been sending olive branches to China, but also choosing her words carefully so as not to lose her key anti-China support base at home.
"I call upon the authorities of mainland China to face up to the reality that the Republic of China exists, and that the people of Taiwan have an unshakeable faith in the democratic system. The two sides of the strait should sit down and talk as soon as possible. Anything can be included for discussion, as long as it is conducive to the development of cross-strait peace and the welfare of people on both sides," Tsai said in her address, an annual event used by Taiwanese presidents to offer their outlook on current relations with China.
Tsai didn't concede outright to Beijing's principle that Taiwan is a part of China.
The so-called "1992 consensus", which was agreed to with the previous China-friendly Nationalist government, acknowledges Taiwan and China are part of a single China, but allows both sides to interpret who is the ruler.
Tsai and her Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) took power in late May after landslide elections. Beijing distrusts the DPP because it traditionally advocates independence for Taiwan, which China deems a wayward province to be taken back by force if necessary.
Tsai said she would maintain a consistent, predictable and sustainable relationship with China.
"Our pledges will not change, and our goodwill will not change. But we will not bow to pressure, and we will of course not revert to the old path of confrontation," she added.
Last week, Tsai appointed a pro-China politician to be her envoy for a meeting of Asia-Pacific leaders next month in Peru. The APEC meetings have traditionally offered an opportunity for senior officials from Taiwan and China to meet, because the grouping categorises Taiwan as a member economy, not a nation.
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