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Ex-Taiwanese president's first visit to China next week


Former Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou will visit China next week, his spokesperson announced on Monday, which will be the first...

Taiwan's former president Ma Ying-jeou will visit China next week, his spokesperson announced Monday, which will mark the first visit in more than 70 years by a president of the island who left his post. position or exercise.

Ma Ying-jeou, however, will not go to Beijing and has no plans to meet with the Chinese government, his representative added.

In favor of a rapprochement

On the other hand, he will go, among other places, to Xiangtan, in the province of Hunan (South-East), region of origin of his parents, specified his cabinet, adding that his visit will have for object, in addition to tributes to his ancestors , the promotion of exchanges between young people.

Relations with the mainland improved greatly under Ma Ying-jeou's tenure (2008-2016) culminating in a summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Singapore in 2015. The former leader is a member of the Kuomintang (KMT), a party more favorable to a rapprochement with mainland China than the Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) of current President Tsai Ing-wen.

China sees Taiwan as one of its territories to be taken back one day, by force if necessary.

The region has been self-administered since 1949 and the end of the civil war which saw Mao Tse-tung's Communists seize power from the nationalists, who were forced to retreat to the island.

Relations have seriously deteriorated since the election of Ma Ying-jeou's successor, Tsai Ing-wen, for whom Taiwan is a sovereign nation, independent and not subordinate to its mainland neighbour.

In response, Beijing has stepped up diplomatic and military pressure on the island.

Read alsoMa Ying-jeou: “Taiwan will not be another Hong Kong”

According to his spokesperson, Ma Ying-jeou hopes that his visit, from March 27 to April 7, will help ease tensions.

It comes after a series of recent exchanges between KMT and Beijing officials.

Tsai Ing-wen's DPP condemned the visit.

"The Taiwanese people cannot accept that a retired head of state becomes a pawn of the Chinese Communist Party in its promotion of unification," he castigated in a press release.

The PDP and the KMT will be the two main parties running in Taiwan's presidential election next year.

The Office of Taiwanese Affairs in Beijing welcomed Ma Ying-jeou's coming soon and offered his help, said Ma Xiaoguang, spokesperson for the institution.

Last month, Kuomintang Vice Chairman Andrew Hsia visited China for nine days and officials from Shanghai then went to Taipei.

Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2023-03-20

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