U.S. Representatives Urge Secretary Rice To Communicate Directly With Taiwan President 

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Co-chairs of the Taiwan Congressional Caucus, Congressmen Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) today sent a letter to US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, urging her to be more supportive of Taiwan’s fragile democracy by communicating directly with Taiwan’s democratically-elected leadership.

Congressmen Rohrabacher and Brown urged the Secretary to invite President Chen to stop over in New York on his way back from Paraguay and Costa Rica, where he will attend the inauguration of president-elect Oscar Arias. The Congressmen stated that such a stopover “… would enable members of Congress to travel to New York to meet with the President, providing them an important opportunity to discuss recent developments in Taiwan and in the Taiwan Strait.”

The Congressmen also urged Secretary Rice to communicate directly with President Chen about Taiwan’s role in promoting democracy around the world.

The Congressmen emphasized that the US needs to do a better job in nurturing and protecting Taiwan’s democracy, stating that Taiwan made its transition to democracy only 15 years ago, and that present fragile democracy was threatened from three sides: 1) China’s military threats, 2) Taiwan’s internal divisions, primarily due to the fact that the loyalties of the old Kuomintang are more with China than with Taiwan itself, and 3) the lack of international support for Taiwan’s democracy.

FAPA President C.T. Lee states: “It is time that the U.S. lifts all restrictions on hi-level visits from Taiwan. That way, there would be no need for complex and lengthy negotiations about where and when President Chen would transit in the U.S. We are encouraged by repeated calls by Members of Congress in favor of lifting such restrictions, as is shown by the introduction in Congress last month of a resolution which concludes that [all restrictions on visits to the United States by high-level elected and appointed officials of Taiwan, including the democratically-elected President of Taiwan, should be lifted].”

 

美國會議員呼籲萊斯國務卿直接與台灣總統對話

台灣連線共同主席布朗(Sherrod Brown, D-OH)與羅拉巴克(Dana Rohrabacher, R-CA)於今日聯合致函美國國務卿萊斯女士,呼籲她與台灣的民選總統直接對話,以展現美國對台灣新興民主的支持。布朗議員目前正在角逐俄亥俄州的參議員席次。

羅拉巴克與布朗議員們在信中呼籲萊斯國務卿邀請陳總統自巴拉圭及哥斯大黎加返台時,能夠在紐約順道過境。議員們表示,陳總統的過境將提供議員們一個絕佳機會,與陳總統面對面探討台灣現況以及兩岸情勢。

議員們在信中強調,由於台灣近年來才成功轉型為民主國家,民主制度仍舊相當脆弱。目前台灣民主更面臨著來自三方面的威脅,額外需要美國的支持與保護。這三方面的威脅為:第一、中國的軍事威脅;第二、台灣內部分化:主要是因為泛藍舊勢力心向中國;第三、欠缺國際社會對台灣民主的支持。

FAPA會長李青泰表示:「從這次陳總統過境事件的複雜程度來看,更突顯出美方有必要一併解除所有對台灣高層官員訪美的限制。只有這樣一勞永逸的做法,才可以徹底省去每一次台美雙方為了談判過境細節所耗費的時間、人力與精力。我們非常感謝美國國會們一再以具體行動表示對這項議題的支持。例如上個月中國領導人胡錦濤訪問華府前夕,議員們特地提出第381號決議案,呼籲台灣高層官員,包括民選總統,訪問美國的限制應該完全解除,以展現他們對台灣的支持。」

李青泰最後表示:「美國一再表示支持全球民主的發展,但是對於台灣的民主制度,美國卻一直僅只於口頭上的讚揚;連最基本的過境要求,目前看來都一波三折。環顧全球局勢,許多國家仍然處於極權專治統之下,一些新興國家的民主制度則在搖搖欲墜當中,美國應該格外珍惜台灣民主的成功典範;我們希望美國不是在過境一事上,刻意刁難台灣,因為這樣的做法將立下惡例,不是一個身為泱泱大國、自由世界領袖應有的舉動。」

(May 2, 2006) U.S. Representatives Urge Secretary Rice To Communicate Directly With Taiwan President / 美國會議員呼籲萊斯國務卿直接與台灣總統對話