- Obama military downsizing leaves U.S. too weak to counter global threats, panel finds
- Sen. Tom Coburn vows to slow down budget-busting bills ahead of recess
- Obama fantasizes about more executive power, signs new order on federal contractors
- Clintons call Klein, Halper, Kessler ‘a Hat Trick of despicable actors’: report
- Boehner accuses Obama of ‘legacy of lawlessness’
- Pro-marijuana group claims responsibility for Brooklyn Bridge flag swap
- Young adults shun Obamacare mostly due to cost: survey
- Stabbing attack on transgender girl, 15, was ‘bias motivated,’ police say
- LGBT adults still lean overwhelmingly toward Democratic Party
- Lawmakers rattled by Syria genocide horrors, call on Obama to act
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: On Taiwan relations, ball in Xi’s court
Question of the Day
I am afraid it could be too early to reject the possibility that Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeou will meet his Chinese counterpart, President Xi Jinping, in Shanghai's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting next year ("Inside China: China ridicules Indian navy," Web, Aug. 22). Mr. Xi may soon realize that this timing is the best and perhaps the only opportunity for them to meet officially before 2016, when Mr. Ma will end the last term of his presidency.
As your piece mentioned, China has opposed any meeting between the leaders of China and Taiwan at any international conference because of the "one-China" principle. This claims Taiwan is part of China — and it rejects Mr. Ma as the leader of a sovereign country. However, Taiwan's official status in the APEC since 1991 is an "economic entity" similar to the island's status as a "custom entity" in the World Trade Organization, where the memberships of China and Taiwan have coexisted since their entries in 2002. This is why Mr. Ma's possible participation next year in APEC's nonofficial summit as an "economic leader" of an "economic entity" will not necessarily challenge China's political taboo, especially when Shanghai will be the host city by then.
More importantly, only if the Ma-Xi meeting were to be sponsored by an international organization such as APEC can it help ease worries among the Taiwanese people, who hate to see Taiwan being downgraded as a locality subject to China. Otherwise, it will be unwise for Mr. Ma to risk his popularity to engage in a political adventure with Mr. Xi, who has proposed political talks since March.
Undoubtedly, this unprecedented meeting between leaders of both sides of the Taiwan Strait will be a milestone for the more than six decades of history in cross-strait relations. Now the ball is in Mr. Xi's court. He can make history if he is really keen to.
CHARLES I-HSIN CHEN
Center of Taiwan Studies
School of Oriental and African Studies
University of London
TWT Video Picks
Both parties recognize the Democrats' scam
Get Breaking Alerts
- Inside the Ring: Israel surprised by Hamas tunnel network
- CRUZ: A tale of two hospitals: One in Israel, one in Gaza
- Obama military strategy too weak for future security, panel reports
- Catholic League slams Obama: 'Do Christian lives mean so little to you?'
- CIA admits improperly hacking Senate computers in search of Bush-era information
- Chicken pox outbreak puts illegal immigrant facility on lockdown
- HUSAIN: Fleeing Iraqi Christians find safe haven at the Shrine of Imam Ali
- Israel surprised by Hamas tunnel network
- Iraq Christians get meeting with top Obama aide
- 'Big Bang' star Mayim Bialik helps send bulletproof vests to IDF
- EDITORIAL: Pols' misrepresentations fuel public's cynicism about politics
- EDITORIAL: 'Operation Choke Point': A noose for business
- EDITORIAL: For too many gays, 'tolerance' is a one-way street
- EDITORIAL: The real Lois Lerner exposed in newly released emails
- EDITORIAL: Meriam Ibrahim's happy immigrant story