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Anti-Secession Law ready for vote on Monday
Updated: 2005-03-12 20:38

The annual session of China's top legislature, the National People's Congress (NPC), will vote on the draft Anti-Secession Law Monday, according to a decision made by the presidium of the session Saturday.

The draft Anti-Secession Law, following some revisions based on opinions and proposals from lawmakers of the top legislature, has been approved by the NPC deputies, sources with the presidium said.

Deputies to the NPC have voiced unanimous support for the draft Anti-Secession Law aimed at checking Taiwan's secession from the country, calling the law a manifestation of the entire Chinese people's common will to seek peaceful reunification and safeguard territorial integrity.

Approximately 3,000 NPC deputies of 35 delegations to the ongoing annual session of the legislature deliberated the draft law shortly after hearing a detailed explanation on Tuesday.

The NPC Law Committee amended the draft law taking into account views of the NPC deputies and opinions voiced at the 13th session of NPC Standing Committee at the end of last year. The committee also reviewed the draft law article by article.

Members of China's top advisory body Thursday voiced their full endorsement for the Anti-Secession Law the national legislature is making, says a political resolution adopted at the closing meeting of the annual session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).

"The formulation of the Anti-Secession Law manifests our persistent stand to seek peaceful reunification of the motherland with the utmost sincerity and greatest efforts, and embodies the common aspiration and firm determination of all the Chinese people to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity and never to allow 'Taiwan Independence' secessionist forces to secede Taiwan from China in any name or by any means," says the resolution.

Prior to the deliberation of the draft law, Chinese President Hu Jintao, also chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC) of the ruling Communist Party of China, set forth his four-point guidelines for cross-Straits relations on March 4, stating that the Chinese people will do their best to seek peaceful reunification of the motherland but will never tolerate "Taiwan independence".

China would use non-peaceful means and other necessary measures in the event that the "Taiwan independence" secessionist forces should act to cause the fact of Taiwan's secession from China, Wang Zhaoguo, vice-chairman of the NPC Standing Committee, cited the law as saying Tuesday.

According to the draft Anti-Secession Law, China would also use non-peaceful means should major incidents entailing Taiwan's secession from China occur, or should possibilities for a peaceful reunification be completely exhausted.

The Taiwan issue is one that is left over from China's civil war of the late 1940s. China has said that resolution of the Taiwan issue and accomplishment of China's complete reunification is one of the three historic tasks of the Communist Party of China and the country.

Over the years, China has hoped to develop closer relations between the two sides of the Taiwan Straits and promote a peacefulreunification of the motherland.

However, the Taiwan authorities have intensified their "Taiwan independence" activities aimed at seceding Taiwan from China. The secessionist activities of the "Taiwan independence" forces "gravely threaten China's sovereign and territorial integrity", Wang told the NPC session.

He stressed China would refrain from using non-peaceful means.

"Using non-peaceful means to stop secession and safeguard our sovereignty and territorial integrity would be our last resort when all our efforts for a peaceful reunification should prove futile," Wang said.

"So long as there is a glimmer of hope for peaceful reunification, we will exert our utmost to make it happen rather than give it up," he said.

Chinese legislators have also voiced support for the draft law during their deliberations and discussions .

"The Anti-Secession Law will provide a powerful legal weapon for opposing and checking the secessionist activities of the 'Taiwan independence' forces," said Feng Henggao, an NPC deputy from south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region at a panel discussion.

Wu Haiying, a legislator from northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, said "China belongs to the 1.3 billion Chinese people living on both sides of the Taiwan Straits, and it's the wish of the entire Chinese people to enact such a law."

Zhao Keshi, a lawmaker of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) delegation, noted that the PLA has the ability to crush any attempt to split the motherland, and will resolutely safeguard China's sovereignty, security and unification."

Local residents in Taiwan interviewed by Xinhua reporters called the proposed law "pragmatic, staunch, mild and rational" and hoped the law could "promote the development of cross-Straits relations by legal means".

"I think this law is pragmatic, staunch, mild and rational, andwill help create new opportunities for the development of cross-Straits relations," said Chen Yuchun, director of the Graduate School of American Studies of the Taiwan-based Chinese Culture University.

Jyh-huei Her, chairman of the Taiwan-based Cross-Strait Economic & Trade Association, said that the proposed law has a clear-cut aim of "promoting the development of cross-Straits relations by legal means", and epitomizes the "goodwill of the mainland."

"It is the secessionist activities of the 'Taiwan independence'forces, such as the seeking of 'Constitutional reform' and 'referendum', that have led to the enactment of the anti-secession law," asserted Su Chi, a professor with Taiwan's Tamkang University.

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