Beijing yesterday condemned Taiwan leader Chen Shui-bian for his continued
push for secession, the latest instance of which is the island's first-ever
"national security report."
The report, commissioned by Chen and released on May 20, says the mainland
poses a "military threat" and vows to safeguard Taiwan's "sovereignty."
Li Weiyi, spokesman of
the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council. [newsphoto
In line with Chen's long-standing call for "Taiwan independence," it pledges
to rebuild the island's "national identity" while internationalizing the Taiwan
Li Weiyi, spokesman for the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council,
described the document as "a systematic sum-up of secessionist propositions" by
Chen and his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) administration.
"With slander and attack against the mainland, the report attempts to
alienate compatriots across the Straits and provoke confrontation," he told a
regular press conference in Beijing's first official comments on the report.
Li said the document fully demonstrates Chen's "obstinate insistence on a
pro-independence stance" as well as his "attempt to sabotage peace across the
"It also exposes the Taiwan leader's evil motive in diverting public and
media attention from people's livelihoods and economic and social issues," he
Taiwan media reports said the "security report" is apparently meant to help
ease mounting pressure on Chen, who has been plagued by a series of scandals
involving his family members.
His son-in-law, Chao Chien-ming, and three others have been detained on
suspicion of insider share trading.
Chen's wife Wu Shu-chen has been accused of accepting department store gift
certificates worth millions of Taiwan dollars and using her influence to bring
about a change in the store's management.
The scandals, coupled with Chen's failure to address the island's economic
woes, have dealt a heavy blow to the Taiwan leader, whose approval rating has
dipped to as low as 8 per cent, according to media surveys.
Also at the news conference, He Shizhong, director of the Economic Bureau of
the Taiwan Affairs Office, announced the expansion of limited shipping services
between coastal mainland cities and Taiwan's outlying islands.
From June 8, passenger ferry services will operate between Taiwan's Jinmen
island and the nearby mainland city of Quanzhou in Fujian Province.
The new shipping routes will expand the "three mini-links," which started on
January 1, 2001.
Taipei has yet to lift its decades-old ban on the "three links" of direct
trade, transport and postal services.
But in 2001, the DPP administration allowed direct shipping links between the
outlying Taiwan islands of Jinmen and Mazu and the port cities of Xiamen and
Fuzhou in Fujian.
(China Daily 06/01/2006 page1)