Taiwan Policy Review (1994)

In 1994 Clinton administration undertook a review on U.S. policy toward Taiwan. In the 1994 review, U.S. pledges to "actively support Taiwan's membership in international organizations accepting non-states as members, and look for ways have Taiwan's voice heard in organizations of states where Taiwan's membership is not possible". It later becomes a basis for U.S. Congress to support Taiwan's WHO bid.

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1982 Communique (1982)

In the Second Shanghai Communiqué, the provisions of the (first) Shanghai Communiqué were reiterated. It declared that the US recognizes the Government of the PRC as the sole legitimate government of China, and it acknowledged the Chinese position that there is but one China and that Taiwan is part of China. During the conclusion of the Communiqué, the Chinese government restated that the Taiwan question is China's internal affair. The US stated that "it has no intention of pursuing a policy of "two Chinas" or "one China, one Taiwan." The question of US arms sales to Taiwan was not settled when US-PRC diplomatic relations were established. In this Communiqué, the US stated that "it intends to reduce gradually its sale of arms to Taiwan, leading over a period of time to a final resolution." * Importance: By means of this Communiqué, the US expresses its support for a peaceful solution of Taiwan’s status.

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President Reagan’s Six Assurances (1982)

Before President Reagan was going to sign the second communiqué with China in 1982, he sent then Assistant Secretary of State, John Holdridge to deliver six points (later so called "Six Assurances) to then President of Taiwan, Chiang Chin-ko. The assurances are deemed by some that it contradicts the 1982 Communiqué. Nevertheless, the six assurances are to assure the Taiwanese government with U.S. commitment to Taiwan's sovereignty and the rights to purchase advanced arms from the U.S. Over the years, many scholars argue that the importance of the "Six Assurances" is underestimated and should be part of the official U.S. policy toward Taiwan and China, in addition to Taiwan Relations Act and three Communiqué.

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Taiwan Relations Act (1979)

The Taiwan Relations Act (TRA) was initiated by Congress and signed into law by President Carter. US-Taiwan diplomatic relations had been terminated three months earlier. The US Congress found it necessary to enact the TRA. The TRA created the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) - a private corporation to handle "unofficial relations" between Taiwan and the US. Important clauses in the TRA are: It is the policy of the US 1) to declare that peace and stability in the area are in the political, security and economic interests of the United States, and are matters of international concern; 2) to make clear that the United States decision to establish diplomatic relations with the PRC rests upon the expectation that the future of Taiwan will be determined by peaceful means; 3) to consider any effort to determine the future of Taiwan by other than peaceful means ... a threat to the peace and security of the western Pacific area and of grave concern to the US; 4) to provide Taiwan with arms of a defensive character; PRC leaders see the TRA as aimed at "preventing China's reunification" and have demanded its revocation. * Importance: The US vows that the US decision to establish diplomatic relations with the PRC rests upon the expectation that the future of Taiwan will be determined by peaceful means. The TRA played an important role in March 1996, when the US sent aircraft carriers to the Taiwan Strait in the midst of Chinese war games aimed at Taiwan.

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Normalization Communique (1979)

On January 1, 1979, the US and the PRC agreed to recognize each other and established diplomatic relations. Within this context, the US vowed to maintain "cultural, commercial and other unofficial relations" with the people of Taiwan. The US and the PRC reaffirmed: "The US acknowledges the Chinese position that there is but one China and Taiwan is part of China." President Carter pledged: "We will continue to have an interest in the peaceful resolution of the Taiwan issue. I have paid special attention to ensuring that normalization of relations between our country and the PRC will not jeopardize the well being of the people of Taiwan." Through this treaty, the US vows to continue to seek a peaceful resolution of Taiwan's status. The treaty guarantees that -although the US established diplomatic relations with the PRC- the people of Taiwan are not abandoned.

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