“After his electoral triumph, Tsai Ing-wen will have to make several trips thank. The first to Zhongnanhai (the residence of the leaders of the chinese Government), then to the office of Carrie Lam, the head of the autonomous Government of Hong Kong, and after the police of Hong Kong”. The joke that circulates on the social networks taiwanese from this weekend makes it clear to what extent the protests in Hong Kong and rejecting Beijing have played a key role in the re-election of the chinoescéptica president taiwanese with a record number of votes in favour. A result that was of course a slap in the face for China.
That slap had hurt, a lot. The minister of chinese Foreign ministry, Wang Yi, former head of the Office of Affairs Taiwanese in his Government, has insisted from Zimbabwe, on a tour of Africa, where, despite the election results, China will not change its attitude toward the island, which it considers an inalienable part of its territory and that no waiver of annexing by force. “This consensus will not change one iota by a local election in Taiwan, and will not be altered by the acts and words misconceptions of certain western politicians”, he stressed, in an apparent reference to the secretary of State of the united STATES, Mike Pompeo, the weekend congratulated Tsai, and criticized the “pressure without” rest " of Beijing.
Beijing is not hiding his animosity towards Tsai, described regularly in the chinese media as a supporter of the independence of Taiwan. Although many in his party, the Democratic Progressive, yes, sympathize with that idea, the president has maintained an ambiguity calculated and supports the continuation of the current situation, a de facto independence without declaring it formally, in order to avoid a violent reaction from China.
Tsai raised the elections during his campaign as a sort of referendum on the necessity of maintaining the democratic values on the island in front of an authoritarian China. Throughout 2019, and after that the chinese president, Xi Jinping, reiterated in his New Year address the threat of the use of force to achieve unification, the Government had increased the pressure. Had taken diplomatic allies of Taiwan –already only you are 15–, had limited tourism to the island and had sent ships of war to military maneuvers in the strait that separates them. The taiwanese Government had also attributed to China, an intense campaign of misinformation and false news.
The message of Tsai caló, especially among young people, who have followed with great interest the protests in Hong Kong. The president taiwanese managed a total of 8.1 million votes, a 57,1%, in an election in which the participation soared to 75, 2%, the highest percentage since 2008, in a clear endorsement of their proposals against the program of reconciliation with China that calls for its rival, Have Kuo-yu, of the conservative Kuomintang. The Democratic Progressive Party also renewed its comfortable absolute majority in the unicameral Legislative.
Despite these results, Beijing insists that it will not change its position. “The reunification of both sides of the Taiwan strait is a historical inevitability,” he underlined Wang, in a tough statement, he assured that “those who try to cleave the country will be doomed to suck for eternity”, a phrase that in mandarin is equivalent to ensure that the subject will go down in history as an example of ill-fame.
The reaction of the minister adds to the criticism of this weekend in the official media chinese. The Xinhua news agency considered that the victory had been made possible by “dirty tricks” of the president and by the maneuvers of “dark foreign forces”.
According to the analyst Jude Blanchette, of the Center for International Strategic Studies (CSIS) in Washington, following the election of Tsai only to be expected “an increase of the pressure from China”. “The Communist Party does not accept either the need for commitments or anything that point to weakness, so that there will be no accommodations” or changes to a position more flexible, he says.
“Although the party is capable of tactical changes, not be reassessed their attitudes on issues that it considers vital, such as Taiwan or Hong Kong. We already saw after the general elections in November in Hong Kong. After the victory of the democratic opposition, Beijing is not recalibró its position to incorporate additional staff and flexible with a broader vision,” recalls the expert. Instead, Xi has been appointed to the front of the representation of the central Government in Hong Kong to Luo Huining, a former governor of the province of Qinghai, a man accustomed to the heavy hand to enforce the orders of Beijing.
Lai I-chung, of the center of studies taiwan Prospect Foundation, is shown in accordance with the american specialist. “Change your policy would be to admit that Xi has it wrong. And as we know, in China Xi Jinping is not wrong ever,” satirizes.
The leader in the taiwanese gave up their Saturday to his first words of victory to urge China to understand that the Taiwan democratic, and its elected democratic government, "will not yield to threats or intimidation," and that the only ones who can decide the future of the island are its 23 million inhabitants, not the Government in Beijing.
Since his victory, Tsai has also launched several messages of support to the protesters of Hong Kong from their accounts on the social networks. “Before the elections I said that Taiwan would be united to defend our freedom and our democracy. Over the past six months, Hong Kong has shown us how important it is that commitment. I hope that the people of Hong Kong find hope in the message that our elections have been sent to the world,” wrote Monday on Twitter.Updated Date: 13 January 2020, 22:00