Tsai reiterates Taiwan's status quo on national day
Taiwan's president has reiterated a pledge to maintain the small self-ruled island nation's status quo in relations with China during her first National Day address, while calling for the mainland to engage in dialogue.

The address was one of a series of events to commemorate Taiwan's National Day on Monday, including a ceremony in front of the Presidential Office and a reception to welcome visiting foreign dignitaries.

Central News Agency reported that Tsai Ing-wen had underlined that the position of her new government -- Tsai assumed office May 20 -- is to establish a consistent, predictable and sustainable cross-strait relationship.

"Maintaining the status quo is the pledge I made to voters," she said.

"The new government will conduct cross-strait affairs in accordance with the Constitution of the Republic of China [as Taiwan is formally known], the Act Governing Relations between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area, and other relevant legislation. And we will spare no effort in maintaining mechanisms for dialogue and communication across the Taiwan Strait."

She added that although relations had seen ups and downs over the past few months, her government's position remained consistent and firm.

"Our pledges will not change and our goodwill will not change. But we will not bow to pressure and we will of course not revert to the old path of confrontation. This is our fundamental attitude toward maintaining the status quo, and it is based on the collective hope for peace across the Taiwan Strait."

Tsai urged the People's Republic of China to face the reality that Taiwan exists and that its people have an "unshakable" faith in democracy.

"The two sides of the strait should sit down and talk as soon as possible," Tsai stressed.

"Anything can be included for discussion, as long as it is conducive to the development of cross-strait peace and the welfare of people on both sides."

Taiwan's national day commemorates the 1911 Wuchang Uprising, which led to the collapse of the Qing Dynasty and the establishment of the Republic of China (ROC) in 1912.

The government of the ROC eventually lost control of the mainland during the Chinese Civil War (1927-1950) and relocated to Taiwan in Dec. 1949.

Last Modified: 2016-10-10 09:07:18
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