‘Taiwan independence’ forces got a slap in the face over WHA participation
Published: May 23, 2023 09:07 PM
The 76th World Health Assembly (WHA), kicked off here on Sunday, focused on saving lives, driving health for all, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a statement.Photo: the website of the WHO

The 76th World Health Assembly (WHA), kicked off here on Sunday, focused on "saving lives, driving health for all," the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a statement.Photo: the website of the WHO

"Taiwan independence" forces, jumping up and down during the ongoing 76th World Health Assembly (WHA), got a slap in the face. Just like the past six years, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), seeking an observer status in WHA, was denied again. 

On Monday, the WHA, the highest decision-making body of the World Health Organization (WHO), announced not to include in the agenda a proposal on Taiwan's participation in the annual assembly as an observer. It is a decision made by both the General Committee and the Plenary Session of the 76th WHA respectively. In other words, it is a decision made by the majority, and is a warning to the embarrassing political farce of the DPP authority. 

Before joining WHA's customary "Walk the Talk" event on Sunday, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was surrounded by reporters from Taiwan. Tedros responded by saying that it would be a decision made by the 194 member states of the WHO. It was a subtle way of saying ''no.''

Chen Xu, China's Permanent representative to the UN Office at Geneva, said nearly 140 countries have communicated to China that they stand for the one-China principle and oppose Taiwan's participation in the WHA. Nearly 100 countries wrote to the WHO director-general or issued public statements to make that clear. 

DPP has apparently underestimated the international community's ability to discern their misdeeds. One-China principle has overwhelming international support and represents the prevailing trend. Secessionist forces will only find it harder and harder to shake it. 

The one-China principle is the foundation for diplomatic relations between China and over 180 countries. Even if some countries tend to think that Taiwan island has its peculiarities, they all recognize it as part of China, with the government of People's Republic of China (PRC) being the sole legal government representating the whole of China. Be it WHO or WHA, they are both international platforms with sovereign states as members, Taiwan island, as part of China's territory, is not supposed to have a place in them, Yuan Zheng, deputy director of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences' Institute of American Studies, told the Global Times. 

From 2009 to 2016, Taiwan region was allowed to participate in the WHA as an observer for eight consecutive years. That occurred on the basis of adherence to the one-China principle and 1992 Consensus on both sides of the Taiwan Straits. However, Since the DPP came into power, it has stubbornly adhered to the separatist position of "Taiwan independence" and refused to recognize the 1992 Consensus that embodies the one-China principle. The political foundation for the Taiwan region to join the WHA no longer exists. 

It is the DPP authorities that have cornered themselves. Without acknowledging the one-China principle, they will never join WHO, not in the past, not now, and not in the future, Yuan said. 

The Taiwan authorities have cornered themselves by refusing to acknowledge the One-China principle while attempting to squeeze into international organizations such as the WHO. It was not possible in the past, it is less possible now, and it will be even less possible in the future.

The DPP couldn't care less about Taiwan people's health. It takes WHA as an occasion to make breakthroughs for its "international space," seeking de jure "independence."

They believe they can count on US backing. The US, in order to contain China, won't miss a chance to play the Taiwan card. This time, it did play along with the DPP authorities. Earlier this month, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken issued a statement endorsing Taiwan island as an observer in the WHA. So when the bid is rejected again, it is not only a slap in DPP's face, but also a humiliation for the US. It means the goal of the US-Taiwan collusion - shaping the image of Taiwan as a democratic country independent of China, has failed.

Since Tsai Ing-wen took office, Taiwan island has lost its observer place in a growing number of international organizations including the International Civil Aviation Organization, the International Criminal Police Organization and United Nations Climate Change Conference. Worse, Taiwan island is also confronting an avalanche of loss of "diplomatic partners."

Doesn't the DPP understand? Resisting the one-China principle, an overwhelming international consensus, will ultimately leave Taiwan with nowhere to go.