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    World expects fruitful talks

2005-04-29 06:50

The United States welcomes the mainland visit of Lien Chan, chairman of the Kuomintang (KMT) party of China, amid positive global media attention. said a deputy US State Department spokesman.

"We believe steps that increase dialogue, support dialogue and support a peaceful resolution to cross-Straits tension are to be supported and welcomed. And that's the case with the latest visit (of Lien)," the spokesman told a press conference on Tuesday.

"We support the expansion of this kind of contact," he said in response to questions about the US position on the eye-catching event.

The European Union (EU) also said it welcomed Lien's visit.

"Our position on cross-Straits relations remains the same, that is, we adhere to the one-China policy and encourage any move to improve cross-Strait relations through peaceful means," said Emma Udwin, spokeswoman for external relations of the European Commission, the EU's executive arm.

"Anything that helps improve cross-Straits ties will be welcomed," she stressed.

In Japan, overseas Chinese and Chinese-Japanese said they believed the tour would not only help ease tensions across the Taiwan Straits, but also conformed to the wishes of Taiwan people for a stable relationship.

Amid strained cross-Straits relations, Lien's visit is very significant in helping alleviate tensions, said Yin Qiuxiong, chairman of the Association of Overseas Chinese and Chinese-Japanese in Japan.

He said overseas Chinese in Japan have high expectations for the scheduled talks between Lien and Communist Party leader Hu Jintao, and hope the meeting will lead to a breakthrough in deadlocked cross-Straits relations.

Spanish newspapers on Wednesday saluted Lien's "journey for peace," asserting his mainland tour is conducive to easing tensions across the Taiwan Straits.

The country's ABC newspaper said the KMT leader's visit bears great historic significance, unfolding peace talks between the KMT and the Communist Party of China (CPC) after a decades-long standoff.

The Thailand-based Asia News Time commended Lien's visit as a turning point in relations across the Taiwan Straits.

"Though it's not a visit on behalf of the authorities of Taiwan, Lien's trip indicates people's willingness on both sides of the Straits to step up contact and peaceful exchanges," the Chinese-language daily said in an editorial on Wednesday.

Besides, it will promote mutual respect if top party leaders are in direct contact, the newspaper said, adding that the visit signalled the start of a new relationship, in a reference to the meeting slated for today between Lien and CPC General Secretary Hu Jintao.

Malaysia's Sin Chew Daily praised the "ice-breaking trip," stressing the historic significance of the visit amid cross-Straits tensions caused by secessionists pushing for Taiwan independence.

The newspaper said overseas Chinese hope the historic meeting will greatly promote cross-Straits dialogue, exchanges and other activities beneficial for the peaceful reunification of China.

(China Daily 04/29/2005 page5)


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