The Kuomintang is holding its presidential primary. Former KMT Chair Hung Hsiu-chu has been invited to visit Beijing on May 12. This is the first publicly announced visit to China by a Taiwan politician since "Xi's five points" were announced in January. Hung's itinerary includes exchanges on cross-strait relations and ethnic future. The Mainland Affairs Council urged Hung to reflect "mainstream" Taiwanese opinion and avoid falling into the Chinese Communists' unification promotion trap.
In her capacity as Chinese Cyan Geese Peace Education Foundation chair, former Kuomintang Chair Hung Hsiu-chu will lead a 70-member delegation on a four-day visit to Beijing on May 12. This will be the first publicly disclosed visit to China by a Taiwanese politician since Xi Jinping laid out five principles for managing cross-strait relations in January. The two sides will conduct an exchange on issues including cross-strait relations and the future of the ethnic Chinese people.
We will express the political sentiments of various groups in Taiwan. We will sit down with them to exchange opinions and communicate with them. In this way, we can resolve misunderstandings arising from the long-term lack of official cross-strait dialogue.
Hung, who has advocated "one China" in the past, attended a Taiwan Straits forum in China when she was KMT chair. Many are wondering if she will meet with Xi Jinping a second time during the upcoming trip. The Mainland Affairs Council says the government encourages "normal" exchanges but opposes the Chinese Communists politically manipulating exchanges.
The council reminds politicians traveling to China to follow all relevant cross-strait regulations and keep in mind social opinion and the fact that the international community is watching and listening. They should also only espouse mainstream Taiwanese public opinion and refrain from falling into the Chinese Communists' unification promotion trap.
The council says there can be no real democratic discussions with authoritarian regimes and no one in Taiwan should harbor any illusions or unreal expectations. Both ruling and opposition lawmakers also expressed their thoughts on Hung's trip.
I believe she will express her personal concerns on cross-strait relations in no uncertain terms.
Is she going to go along with the "one China principle" under the "one China, two systems" concept that is part of "Xi's five principles," or is she going to clarify the "one China, two interpretations" concept that is part of the Kuomintang's 1992 Consensus? I think Hung Hsiu-chu is an experienced civic representative and politician and I hope she can keep a clear head.
Under new revisions to the Classified National Security Information Protection Act, former President Ma Ying-jeou and KMT Chair Wu Den-yih have been barred from traveling to China this year. With the KMT in the midst of its presidential primary, Hung's every move in Beijing will no doubt be under close scrutiny.