Xi meets with honorary KMT chairman Wu

By Chang Meng Source:Global Times Published: 2013-6-14 1:18:01

The Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee General Secretary <a href=Xi Jinping (R) meets with Wu Poh-Hsiung, honorary chairman of the Kuomintang (KMT) Party, in Beijing, capital of China, June 13, 2013. Photo: Xinhua" src="http://www.globaltimes.cn/Portals/0/attachment/2011/d97d802c-0468-462c-9f93-e0ef4a249199.jpeg" />

The Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee General Secretary Xi Jinping (R) meets with Wu Poh-Hsiung, honorary chairman of the Kuomintang (KMT) Party, in Beijing, capital of China, June 13, 2013. Photo: Xinhua

Communist Party of China (CPC) General Secretary Xi Jinping met with Wu Poh-hsiung, honorary chairman of the Kuomintang (KMT), Thursday afternoon and called on the mainland and Taiwan to "heal the historical trauma" and strengthen political mutual trust under the one-China framework.

Xi offered four proposals in the meeting on furthering relations across the Taiwan Straits, which highlight the one-China policy, mutual trust and the importance of peaceful development to cross-Straits relationships.

"Though the mainland and Taiwan are yet to be reunified, they belong to one China and are inseparable parts of the country," Xi said.

Wu also stressed that adhering to the "1992 Consensus" and opposing "Taiwan independence" are the positions of both the KMT and CPC.

Wu said both sides define the cross-Straits relationship within the one-China framework, not as a country-to-country relationship. He said he hopes the meeting could be "constructive" at this important time.

Leading a delegation representing Taiwan leader Ma Ying-jeou, Wu arrived in Beijing Wednesday and it is the first official meeting between the two parties since Xi took office as head of the CPC in November.

Xi added that great progress has been achieved in cross-Straits relations since the KMT regained office in 2008 based on the consensus of peaceful development, and that the CPC will maintain consistency in existing policies toward Taiwan and hopes the two sides can work together to achieve the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

"Wu's clear statement of the one-China framework helped to lay a fundamental key for cross-Straits ties in the next three years of Ma's term to strengthen mutual trust, which was the aim of the meeting after the leadership transition," Yang Lixian, deputy secretary-general of the Beijing-based National Society of Taiwan Studies, told the Global Times Thursday.

Wu also noted that Taiwan would like to participate in more international activities to make its own contribution, and wishes to strengthen economic cooperation with the mainland by expediting progress in joining the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership to secure economic interests in the Asia-Pacific region, according to the press office of the KMT.

"These are some urgent needs for Taiwan, but it will take time to interact with the mainland to negotiate the room for such development. At the end of the day, the top-level meeting ensured that cross-Straits relations will continue at a stable pace, which is even more important than drastic progress," Li Fei, an expert of Taiwan studies with Xiamen University, told the Global Times.

The Thursday meeting did not open a concrete political dialogue as previous observations predicted, but Yang said that it touched on the topic in a subtle way including discussions about setting up liaison offices, and on Ma's stance that a general dialogue has been taking place over political and economic issues in civil societies in years, which were never restricted.

"It's not a governmental dialogue yet, but Wu's official position suggested that the two sides are making efforts to push forward relations when it had entered a critical stage," said Yang.

Ma reiterated recently that the KMT would not promote "Taiwan independence, one China, one Taiwan, or Two Chinas" before sending the delegation, and Beijing would prefer to see the KMT retain power, Li Jiaquan, a researcher with the Institute of Taiwan Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times Thursday.

Li noted that political contact between the two sides would be inevitable judging from the fact that the China-US relationship is improving and that Ma is working actively to increase public support, in addition to growing voices calling for cross-Straits joint efforts in the face of recent conflicts between Taiwan and the Philippines.

"The possibility of a meeting for Xi and Ma will depend on the international situation and public will in Taiwan," said Li.

Xinhua contributed to this story


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