Taiwan’s new government will carefully manage relations with mainland China and wants Washington to keep encouraging reconciliation, a senior official of the victorious party said Tuesday.
Joseph Wu is secretary-general of the independence-leaning Democratic Progressive Party. He is meeting with senior U.S. officials this week following the party’s commanding victory in elections on the self-governing island Saturday. The DPP defeated the Nationalist Party that has forged closer ties with the mainland during its eight-year tenure.
The result was widely seen as a setback to Beijing, but Wu said his party’s presidential nominee, Tsai Ing-wen, has made clear she wants to maintain the status quo and safeguard peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.
“We will do our utmost to find a mutually acceptable mode of interaction between Taiwan and the mainland, one that avoids confrontation and prevents surprises,” Wu told the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank.
Those remarks will be welcomed by the Obama administration. The United States is Taiwan’s most important ally and source of defensive arms but it has applauded the easing of cross-Strait relations under the outgoing Nationalist government. China claims the island as its own territory and threatens to use force if Taiwan declares formal independence. Read more