According to media reports, the Foreign Ministry’s efforts to establish Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Offices (TECRO) in Cambodia, Laos, and Burma have hit an impasse. In addition, the Foreign Ministry has also decided to withdraw its representative offices from Bangladesh, Bolivia, and Venezuela. Hsia Li-Yan, Deputy Foreign Minister, said during the interpellation period yesterday, “The only reason is, of course, Mainland China.”Boy, ya bend over backwards to please the PRC and they still treat ya badly. Who could have imagined it? One need only contrast this failure with DPP Mayor Chen Chu of Kaohsiung, who not only described Ma as "President" in China, but also refused to enter on a Taiwan Compatriot Visa, the odious PRC annexation of Taiwan via the visitor's status.
Hsia pointed out that with the assistance of Taiwan businessmen, the Foreign Ministry had been able to establish official contacts with Cambodia, Laos, and Burma. Hsia said, “However, the three countries maintained reservations with regard to establishing TECRO offices,” adding that “the Foreign Ministry will continue in its efforts to set up offices.”
Although a TECRO office in Bangladesh was set up more than four years ago, our officials have not been allowed to display a TECRO plaque or issue visas and Bangladeshi officials have refused to interact with TECRO officials. Commenting on this, Hsia said, “If we continue to maintain a TECRO office in Bangladesh, it would be a waste of the taxpayer’s money.” Hsia added that “officials of the representative offices in Bolivia and Venezuela are having difficulties in obtaining visas even for themselves, so how are they going to issue visas and notarize documents?”
President Ma has striven for a cross-Strait diplomatic truce ever since he took office, hoping that both side of the Strait would put an end to the diplomatic tug-of-war. However, he has not urged with special emphasis that both sides of the Strait could establish representative offices in the capital cities of each other’s allies.
The triumphant screeches over the World Health Assembly by the KMT and its media pals exist to throw dirt over the ongoing reduction in Taiwan's international space that the Ma Administration appears to be acquiescing in. Note too the fallout from US foreign policy -- Chavez in Venezuela leans to China because the US leans on Chavez, with concomitant negative results for Taiwan. Remember when Venezuela refused to issue visas to the Taiwan baseball team two years ago? It's good that there is solidarity among small countries....
The news comes as the President and First Lady are off to Central America through the US. US approval of Ma is signaled by the fact that he is permitted to transit through Seattle and Los Angeles, a privilege also accorded to Chen Shui-bian back before the Bush Administration decided what it really needed to be doing was cozying up to Beijing.
- Michael Richardson reports that the new Obama point man for North Korea thinks Taiwan is a province of China and hews to the line that economic integration will lead to political integration -- and thinks Taiwan's democracy complicates things. Yes, if only everyone simplified things by shooting their own people like China does.....
- China to send buying teams to Taiwan.
- Taiwan fans of Korean TV show peeved at poor presentation in Taiwan, think downloaded version is better.
- Taiwan invests in baseball.
- maddog discusses the defacing of the Jingfu gate by the KMT and the DPP protest of it.
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