China’s New White Paper Posts ‘Reunification’ Vision for Taiwan – Diplomat | Latest Updates

Amid the worst security crisis in the Taiwan Strait in more than 20 years, China’s State Council has issued a new white paper on “The Taiwan Question and China’s Reunification in the New EraThe paper, in detail, outlines Beijing’s vision for Taiwan under the “new era” of Xi Jinping’s leadership, and serves as an update to previous white papers issued in Taiwan. 1993 And 2000,

The paper begins by outlining China’s commitment to “resolving the Taiwan question and realizing the full integration of China”, with the goal being “the common aspiration of all sons and daughters of the Chinese nation”, “the pursuit of China’s rejuvenation”. Essential to the realization” and “a historic mission” of the Communist Party of China (CCP).

As a justification for the CCP’s claim on Taiwan, the white paper includes a lengthy discussion of the historical relationship between China and Taiwan. In this statement of history, “Japan’s 50-year occupation of Taiwan” marks a period of China’s “national humiliation” and is thus a historical wrong that must be corrected. The white paper emphasizes that “the fact that we are not yet united is a mark left by history on the Chinese nation.”

Importantly, however, the White Paper also provides a genuine political justification: “National reunification is the only way Taiwan can be invaded and re-occupied by foreign countries, to include China.” To thwart the efforts of external forces, and to safeguard the interests of our country’s sovereignty, security and development.” Later, the white paper reiterated allegations that the US was “using Taiwan to control China” and “undermining China’s development and progress.”

The white paper maintains China’s preference for “peaceful reunification”, identified as “the country’s first choice”. [CCP] and the Chinese government. However, as is the long-standing CCP policy, the paper reiterates that China “will not abandon the use of force” in pursuing the goal of reunification. tries to reassure readers at that point by promising that “[u]The use of force will be the last resort in extenuating circumstances.”

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In another point of consistency, the White Paper maintains a “one country, two systems” framework for Taiwan after a reunification, pledging that “Taiwan can continue its current social order and high standards in accordance with the law.” level of autonomy.” Yet the paper also reiterates recent claims made in the context of Hong Kong that “the two systems are subordinate to and derived from one country.” That logic has been used in Hong Kong to restrict free speech and limit political participation to “patriots”.

Beijing is aware of the argument that its Hong Kong policy since 2019 has destroyed any opportunity for Taiwan to accept a similar model for unification. However, instead of assuring that Taiwan would be treated differently, the White Paper categorically denies that there was a problem with Hong Kong’s handling. The paper claims that the “one country, two systems practice has been a resounding success” in Hong Kong due to central government intervention, where “order was restored and prosperity returned”.

As Crisis Group analyst Amanda Hsiao pointed out on Twitter, the 2022 white paper represents an undermining of the previous descriptions of “one country, two systems,” which included more detailed commitments about Taiwan’s autonomy. The 1993 White Paper stated that Taiwan would maintain “autonomy over party, government, military, economic, financial matters” along with “administrative, legislative, independent judicial, final decision powers”. Hasiao tweeted, Similarly, both the 1993 and 2000 White Papers on Taiwan specifically stated that China would “not send troops or administrative personnel stationed to Taiwan” after reunification. That pledge is conspicuously absent in the latest version.

The 2022 White Paper pledges that “Taiwan’s social order and its way of life will be fully respected, and the private property, religious beliefs and legitimate rights and interests of the people in Taiwan will be fully protected” – But with all-important disclaimer that this is only possible “provided that China’s sovereignty, security and development interests are guaranteed.” In other words, “respect” for Taiwan’s “way of life” is subject to security interests as defined by the CCP. In particular the rights guarantees seem limited to “all Taiwanese compatriots who support the reunification and rejuvenation of the nation,” which China says “will be the masters of the region.”

The left is largely the fate of Taiwanese who “do not support reunification.” China already took legal action Against “radical separatists” on Taiwan, including several members of the ruling Democratic Progression Party. “The Chinese mainland will seek criminal responsibility for them, which is valid for life,” the Taiwan Affairs Office announced. Indeed, there have been clear indications that any reunification scenario on Taiwan would involve prosecution and jail time for Taiwan’s current leadership. The threat is behind China’s repeated allegations that the DPP is “separatist” or “separatist” – both offenses under a national security law adopted in 2015.

The 2022 White Paper clearly notes that “[m]Oves represents a serious crime of isolation in order to separate Taiwan from China” before adding that “DPP officials have taken a separatist stance, and have been involved in relentlessly provocative actions designed to divide the country by external forces.” colluded with.”

In that sense, the white paper will only amplify the concerns raised by Lu Shai, China’s ambassador to France. diplomat in recent headlines To casually suggest that China would “re-education” in Taiwan followed by “re-education”.

Those comments are especially alarming given the massive scale of the Chinese government. Re-education campaign in Xinjiang, in which hundreds of thousands of Uighurs, Kazakhs and members of other Muslim minority groups have been detained involuntarily (and extrajudicially). Survivors report that they are being forced to undergo lengthy “education” sessions praising the Chinese Communist Party and condemning themselves for being overly religious or questioning the CCP’s philanthropy.

Despite the controversy, Ambassador Luce doubled down on his comments in a second interview, claiming that “Taiwanese authorities” have “effectively induced and intoxicated” the population through “desensitization” policies.

“It is necessary to re-educate [Taiwan’s population] To put an end to the separatist idea and separatist doctrine,” he said.

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It is clear from his follow-up comments that Lu did not misrepresent or misrepresent official thinking on “re-education” in Taiwan. Indeed, Lu’s remarks have an indirect echo in the White Paper’s pledge to “increasing the knowledge of our compatriots about the mainland and reducing these misconceptions and misconceptions, to help oppose the manipulation of separatists”. .

The White Paper openly acknowledges that “[t]Long-standing political differences between the two sides are fundamental obstacles to the continued improvement of cross-strait relations.” To address that issue, it uses “flexible forms of consultation and discussion” to gradually reach consensus. But it is hard to reconcile Beijing’s promise that “we stand ready to hold wide-ranging exchanges with all parties, groups or individuals in Taiwan aimed at resolving political differences” with cross-strait talks. Refusing to join the DPP Govt.

China’s willingness to get involved comes with a clear warning that such talks should be “based on the one-China principle and the 1992 consensus” – which would dissuade a large segment of Taiwan’s population. DPP chairman Tsai Ing-wen has consistently refused to adopt the 1992 consensus despite repeated urgings from Beijing – and she won re-election in 2020 with an overwhelming majority.

The White Paper maintains that when it comes to Taiwan, time is on China’s side. The rise of China’s economic and military power is seen as “an important factor” in the “realization of full national integration” – both as a deterrent to “separatist activities” on Taiwan and as a positive force. Attract more Taiwanese to China.

,[T]It will continue to increase the overall strength and international influence of the mainland, and its influence and appeal on Taiwanese society will continue to grow,” declares the white paper. While the harsh deterrent factor is indeed increasing, China’s “appeal to Taiwanese society” under Xi’s leadership.

Politically motivated prosecutions and repeated references to “re-education” in the post-unification scenario are only adding to Taiwan’s resistance. Taken to its peak, this sentiment is summed up in a phrase often seen on Chinese social media: “留岛不留人” (“Keep the islands, don’t keep the people”).

For Taiwan’s 23 million people, this is a happy prospect, and a white paper does little to soothe.

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