A recently released official document revealed that the Chinese government is no longer honoring its pledge not to send troops or administrators to Taiwan.
China expressed its position in an updated white paper called “The Taiwan Question and China’s Reunification in the New Era,” which highlights President Xi Jinping’s stance to grant even less autonomy to Taiwan in the event of Chinese control over the island.
The updated white paper has omitted the line that assures Taiwan’s autonomy in the two previous papers published in 1993 and 2000. In both versions, Beijing promised that it “will not send troops or administrative personnel to be based in Taiwan” after achieving what it then claimed as “reunification.”
Instead, the paper now proposes that the nation return to China’s rule under a “one country, two systems” model, the same system that Hong Kong was placed under after the British returned it to Chinese rule in 1997.
While the “one country, two systems” model intends to grant some autonomy to Taiwan, the major political parties in the nation have mostly rejected it. Based on opinion polls, it also has not gained any public support.
Also removed in China’s latest position paper is a line present in the 2000 version that “anything can be negotiated” as long as Taiwan adheres to the “only one China” motto and does not seek independence.
The updated paper comes after China announced that its military has “completed various tasks” around Taiwan but expressed that it will continue to conduct regular patrols in the area.
Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council has denounced the paper and accused it of being “full of lies of wishful thinking and disregarded the facts.”
“Only Taiwan’s 23 million people have the right to decide on the future of Taiwan, and they will never accept an outcome set by an autocratic regime,” the council said.