Taiwan to continue seeking to join international community: president

President Tsai Ing-wen said Saturday that Taiwan will continue its efforts to seek to participate in international organizations, despite facing increasing pressure from China.

Addressing an academic seminar to mark the 20th anniversary of the first presidential election by popular vote in Taiwan, organized by the Wu San-lien Foundation for Taiwan Historical Materials in Taipei, a non-government organization, Tsai predicted that Taiwan’s bids to take part in international community activities will face stronger challenges and difficulties in the future, but said that the country’s efforts in this regard will not be suspended.

“Our every effort will leave a legacy and will make Taiwan’s determination and its people more visible in the international community,” Tsai said.

“We will continue to develop substantive cooperation relations with other countries based on sincere and honest friendship,” she added.

The president cited Taiwan’s aborted bid to participate in this year’s International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) assembly currently being held in Montreal, Canada as an example, saying that although Taiwan has not been invited to attend the triennial conference, not only its diplomatic allies but also the United States, Japan, European nations and international media have expressed their support for its participation.

It is widely believed that Taiwan’s failure to get invited to attend this year’s ICAO meeting was due to objections from Beijing.

Taiwan was represented by then-Civil Aeronautics Administration Director-General Shen Chi in the ICAO’s last assembly held in September, 2013.

Shen attended the meeting as a special guest of then-ICAO Council President Roberto Kobeh Gonzalez, under the designation Chinese Taipei — the name Taiwan often has to use when taking part in international events.

Before Shen’s participation in 2013, the last time Taiwan attended an ICAO assembly was in 1971, when it participated under the name Republic of China, just months before it lost its seat at the United Nations to Beijing.

Source: Overseas Community Affairs Council