Law only targets handful of secessionists
"President Hu's speech suggests that the law is aimed at opposing and checking Taiwan's secession from China in the name of 'Taiwan independence'," Li said.
"It made clear that the law targets a handful of secessionist forces rather than our Taiwan compatriots."
During the speech, Hu pledged to "do everything we can to look after and safeguard the legitimate rights and interests (of Taiwan compatriots)."
Kai Qinghai, a Taiwan aborigine, said he hoped he and his brothers in Taipei and Kaohsiung would be able to see each other more often in the near future through more convenient cross-Straits air travel.
Kai, also a national lawmaker from Fujian Province, said he believed "Taiwan independence" was against the will of people on both sides of the Straits.
Meanwhile, NPC deputies representing the Taiwan region said President Hu's speech demonstrates the mainland's "heart-felt confidence" in the Taiwanese people.
"The speech (by Hu) has once again shown the top leadership's commitment and flexibility in addressing the Taiwan issue," said Wang Qiongying, head of the NPC Taiwan delegation of 13 deputies.
Deputy Wei Lihui, who is of Taiwan origin, said the planned anti-secession law is in the interest of the Taiwan people.
Wei, who has visited the island four times during the past 10 years, said the current situation in the island is that secessionist forces have been insidiously seeking secession from China, but the Taiwanese people hope for close cross-Straits ties.
Yang Chengxu, a senior researcher with the China Institute of International Studies, said there is no reason for other countries to worry that the anti-secession law would damage their interests.
"I believe both Washington and Tokyo do not want to see a war across the Straits," Yang said yesterday, warning that it is dangerous for the two to send wrong signals to the Taiwan authorities. He criticized Washington and Tokyo for listing the Taiwan issue as a "concern" in a joint statement released last month.
(China Daily 03/05/2005 page2)