Envoy to Italy says Taiwan will never willingly be annexed by China

20-Oct-2021 Intellasia | TaiwanNews | 5:02 AM Print This Post

Taiwan’s envoy to Italy, Lee Sing-ying, on Saturday (October 16) gave an interview with the Italian political magazine Formiche in which he emphasized that Taiwan is a bastion of freedom and democracy in Asia and will never willingly submit to Chinese control.

In an article titled “Taiwan’s Power is Democracy,” Lee explained that the term “reunification” is misleading because Taiwan has never been under the rule of the People’s Republic of China and therefore it cannot “reunify” with a territory it has never owned. What China actually wants to do is annex Taiwan, CNA cited him as saying.

Lee said Taiwan is a democratic country whose 23 million people decide their own president through direct elections every four years. Taiwanese have demonstrated through their votes that they do not want to be annexed by China, he added.

He pointed out that China’s “hawkish” claims on Taiwan are just meant to distract from Beijing’s domestic issues, such as the real estate crisis and energy shortages, while satisfying its expansionist ambitions.

Lee said that Taiwan holds a key position in the Indo-Pacific region in terms of geographic location, economy, technology, and symbolic significance. It is a major maritime and air hub, both militarily and commercially, he pointed out.

The representative said that Taiwan and its neighbouring countries form an island chain around Asia, with Japan and South Korea in the north and the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the rest of Southeast Asia in the south, per CNA. This is where many merchant ships pass through, he noted.

Lee said that Taiwan is a major global manufacturer of semiconductors, which are essential for the production of cell phones, computers, automobiles, and various electrical appliances.

In terms of symbolism, Lee mentioned that Taiwan is a bastion of democracy in Asia and has consistently ranked high in global rankings of freedom of the press, human rights, and civil rights. Taiwan’s experience is a model for many Asian countries that are promoting democratic transitions, he said.

Taiwan also hopes to strengthen friendships with European countries based on freedom and democracy, but these values need to be constantly defended, nourished, and strengthened, Lee said. Giving in to one small concession could lead to collapse, he added. The representative said the EU is important for maintaining international peace, as it has a decisive influence on democratic values. He emphasized that if Taiwan and the EU can work together to defend democracy, it will be beneficial to all Western democracies.



Category: Taiwan

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