The Ma-Xi Meeting Highlights the Jurisdiction of the Republic of China
James Hsiao, 23, is the chairman of the KMT Youth League and an ex officio member of the KMT Central Committee. A political science major at Tunghai University, he got involved in student politics in high school. Hsiao believes that the “one China" denotes the Republic of China.
The Ma-Xi Meeting Highlights the Jurisdiction of the Republic of ChinaBy Ying-hsi Lee
From CommonWealth Magazine (vol. 585 )
I have a very positive view of the Ma-Xi Meeting. In the past, cross-strait relations were so tense, nobody would have imagined that there could be such enormous progress after President Ma took office.
The symbolic meaning of the Ma-Xi Meeting lies in the fact that the two sides of the strait no longer face each other with daggers drawn; I think this is a pragmatic way of facing the existence of their jurisdiction. They are also pragmatically facing the existence of our jurisdiction.
No matter which road the two sides of the Taiwan Straits take in the future, they must have exchanges and sit down for talks. What they should talk about and how they should talk is another story.
If there is not even an opportunity to sit down and talk, we have no idea what will happen in the future.
Therefore, that the two leaders were able to sit down for talks is a major milestone. It is a good beginning and should become routine.
In footage from President Ma’s news conference at the Presidential Office [ahead of the Xi-Ma Meeting] broadcast by the China Central Television network (CCTV), a large [Republic of China] national flag was shown. In the past, they would generally blacken out our national flag, but this time they didn’t, which shows that China wants to demonstrate its goodwill.
A meeting between the leaders from both sides of the Taiwan Strait indicates that we’ve had mutual trust; we can move further forward on the basis of this foundation. We can expect China to no longer exert pressure when we participate in international organizations in the future; it could even help us.
‘One China’ Means the Republic of China.
The fact that the two leaders addressed each other as “mister” at the Ma-Xi Meeting only shows their mutual respect. Had Xi Jinping addressed Ma Ying-jeou as "president”, this would have meant that he recognizes the sovereignty of the Republic of China, which would have created two Chinas in violation of “one China, different interpretations.”
Under the framework of “one China, different interpretations”, there is nothing for it but to avoid directly addressing the counterpart with his official title, and “mister” is a very neutral term.
The reason why President Ma did not mention “one China, different interpretations” is because it is included in the 1992 Consensus, because the “one China" means the Republic of China.
I do not think that the Ma-Xi Meeting destroyed Taiwan’s democratic values because Ma and Xi met in their capacity as cross-strait leaders, and this underlines the jurisdiction of the Republic of China on Taiwan.
President Ma established a normal routine for meetings between the leaders from both sides of the Taiwan Strait. In the future, the two sides can move toward a more stable situation; that’s the most important outcome of the meeting between the two leaders.
Translated from the Chinese by Susanne Ganz