by Matthew Strong
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – In her inauguration speech Friday, President Tsai Ing-wen described the 1992 Taiwan-China talks as a historical fact and said Taiwan would serve as “a staunch guardian of peace.”
Tsai gave the 30-minute speech in front of the Presidential Office Building at 11:10 a.m., after having been sworn in as the island country’s first woman president at 9 a.m. Her first official act as president was signing the appointment of former Finance Minister Lin Chuan as premier.
The wide-ranging address touched on social and economic adjustments, fairness and justice, regional development, judicial reform and relations with China and with the world.
Turning to China, Tsai called for continued cooperation. “The two governing parties across the Strait must set aside the baggage of history, and engage in positive dialogue, for the benefit of the people on both sides,” the new president said.
As expected, Tsai did not use the controversial term “1992 Consensus,” but named the Hong Kong talks where according to the previous government the consensus was reached as one of the existing political foundations for relations between Taiwan and China.
“In 1992, the two institutions representing each side across the Strait …, through communications and negotiations, arrived at various joint acknowledgements and understandings. It was done in a spirit of mutual understanding and a political attitude of seeking common ground while setting aside differences. I respect this historical fact,” she said.
Tsai listed four elements referring to the foundations for relations with China, with the first one being the fact of the 1992 talks. She went on to name “the existing Republic of China constitutional order” as the second element, “outcomes of over twenty years of twenty years of negotiations and interactions across the Strait” as the third and “the democratic principle and prevalent will of the people of Taiwan” as the fourth and final element of the existing political foundations for relations with China.
keywords: inauguration, Tsai Ing-wen
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