Still communicating unofficially with China, despite suspending contact: Taiwan President

Taipei, Taiwan Updated: Aug 21, 2016, 01:16 AM(IST)

President Tsai Ing-wen reiterated she wanted to maintain the status quo in cross-strait relations, but said 'there is no magic medicine' to resolve the existing strains. Photograph:( Getty )

Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen said on Saturday that unofficial communication channels with China remain in place, despite Beijing in June suspending contacts because the island's new leader would not endorse the concept of a 'One China' principle.

The Chinese government blamed the self-ruled island earlier this week for the breakdown of communications. China, which regards Taiwan as a renegade province, has been unsettled by Tsai, who took office in May, as she has been reluctant to disavow calls for formal independence.

"While the official mechanism of communication has not been restored, unofficial communication channels with the mainland remain available," she told reporters, without elaborating. "We hope both sides maintain stability, so there won’t be any misunderstanding or misjudgment on either side," she said.

Tsai, who heads the independence-leaning Democratic Progressive Party, reiterated she wanted to maintain the status quo in cross-strait relations, but said, "there is no magic medicine” to resolve the existing strains.

China has insisted Tsai must recognise the "1992 consensus" reached between China's Communists and Taiwan's then-ruling Nationalists, the political basis for the one China principle, although each have their own interpretation of what that means.

After the defeated Nationalist forces fled to Taiwan following a civil war with the Communists in 1949, China has never renounced the use of force to bring Taiwan under its control.

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