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Mainland Affairs Council

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President Chen's New Year's Day Address ( excerpt : cross-strait relations )

Over the past four years, we have, on many occasions, extended olive branches of peace to the other side of the Strait, actively seeking to establish new basis for the resumption of cross-strait dialogue and consultation. Just this past year, we have repeatedly expressed our sincerity and goodwill for the promotion and normalization of cross-strait relations, as in my inaugural speech of May, National Day Address, and the ten-point conclusion of November 10 at a high-level national security meeting. However, regrettably, despite all our efforts, the other side remains reluctant in giving up its military intimidation against Taiwan. Moreover, the other side continues its saber rattling and suppression of Taiwan on all fronts. Now, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) attempts to unilaterally arbitrate and sanction cross-strait issues, concocting a so-called "legal basis" for its military invasion of Taiwan. Such actions will not only unilaterally change the status quo of peace in the Taiwan Strait, but will also pose the greatest threat to regional stability and world peace.

We once again urge the CCP authorities not to under-estimate the will of the Taiwan people in defending the sovereignty, security and dignity of the Republic of China. The sustainable and peaceful development of cross-strait relation not only echoes the collective longing of peoples on both sides of the Strait, it also aligns with the expectations from the international community. We will continue to adhere to our policy of "keeping a firm stance while moving forward pragmatically" in dealing with cross-strait issues. Even in the face of the unilateral and aggressive actions by the CCP, we will "take hold of the intent, and not act on impulse." In addition, we will proceed in a manner that is "deliberate and not backward, steadfast and not hasty," to form a "Committee for Cross-Strait Peace and Development," to forge an internal consensus in Taiwan, and actively promote and establish a peace and stability framework for cross-strait interactions. 

I would like to express my appreciation for our international allies, including the United States and Japan, for their long-term support for the people of Taiwan and for their concern about peace across the Taiwan Strait. The relations Taiwan has cultivated with the international community draw strengths from not only a "value alliance" of freedom, democracy and human rights, but also the acquiescence and mutual understanding developed from long-term cooperation. However, in light of tremendous pressure and suppression in the international arena from the other side, Taiwan's foreign diplomacy faces enormous challenges. Sometimes progress can only be made tacitly, and not publicized. Other times, we must bear the weight of our responsibilities along side the indignation of unfair slanders. While constructive criticisms are always appreciated, unfounded speculation and distortion, or the denigration of the amity and friendship Taiwan shares with our international allies, are not. Fundamentally, we have absolute confidence in the future expansion of Taiwan's international space, as well as our relations with the United States and Japan.

【Source: Office of the President】