Xi Jinping says Taiwan “must and will be” reunited with China while the island favours self-rule

DHARAMSALA, Jan 2: Chinese President Xi Jinping has called on Taiwan to reject independence and embrace “peaceful reunification” with China.
Taiwan “must and will be” reunited with China, BBC quotes Xi Jinping as saying in his speech on the occasion to mark 40 years since the start of improving ties between the two countries. Taiwanese people “must understand that independence will only bring hardship,” the Chinese President has stated in the report.
Xi has stressed that relations with Taiwan were “part of China’s domestic politics, “Beijing would never tolerate any form of activity promoting Taiwanese independence and further remarked that foreign involvement in Taiwan independence is ‘intolerable.’
He has further reiterated that China reserved the right to use force as it considers the island as a breakaway province.
However, a day earlier, Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen reiterated that the island’s people want to maintain self-rule and has also urged China to seek a peaceful solution to its differences with Taiwan.
“China must respect the freedom and democracy of Taiwan’s 23 million people and it must handle our differences peacefully and as equals,” Ms Tsai has said in her New Year’s Day address, reports the New York Times.
Taiwan has been self-governed since 1949 when Chiang Kai-shek’s Kuomintang troops fled to the island after losing China’s civil war to Mao’s Communist Party. Beijing considers Taiwan as an errant province and never shied away from using force to bring it under its control.

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