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KMT hits back over DPP criticisms it degraded Taiwan
Central News Agency
2014-09-04 10:22 PM
Taipei, Sept. 4 (CNA) The ruling Kuomintang (KMT) hit back Thursday at critics of how China delivered an invitation to Taiwan for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit by criticizing the opposition for not "earning respect" during the previous administration. Taiwan received its invitation from Gong Qinggai, deputy head of China's Taiwan Affairs Office, who gave it to its Taiwanese counterpart to forward on to the president instead of directly giving it to the head of state, as is customary of APEC invitations. Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen said the previous day that Gong's ranking is not high enough to serve as the envoy of APEC summit host to deliver the invitation. Chen Yi-hsin, deputy director of the KMT's Culture and Communications Committee and party spokesman, said Thursday the invitations were even less direct when the DPP was in power from 2000 to 2008. When current DPP Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen was head of Taiwan's China policymaking body in 2001, he said, China offered only a faxed invitation for that year's APEC meeting. He said it was a rare move compared to the customary practice of sending an envoy to deliver the invitation, even though then-President Chen Shui-bian had expressed interest in attending personally. Furthermore, when Tsai was vice premier in 2006, APEC summit host Vietnam mailed only a paper invitation to Taiwan before finally sending an unofficial envoy under pressure from Taiwan, the KMT spokesman said. "(We) ask that Chairwoman Tsai first think about whether she earned respect for Taiwan back then before criticizing others," he quipped. The issue has been more complex this year because China is the host of the APEC summit. As with the past, Taiwan's president is unable to attend the leadership meeting due to opposition from China. (By Claudia Liu and Jeffrey Wu)
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