“One China Policy vs One China Principle”

The One China Principle (adhered to by Beijing) provides that: “There is only One China and Taiwan is part of China.” Conversely, the One China Policy (adhered to by -for instance- the US) provides that: “the U.S. acknowledges that China has made certain claims over Taiwan, but that the U.S. does not recognize Chinese claim of sovereignty over Taiwan. The U.S. only ACKNOWLEDGES China’s claims.”

On February 9, 2017, President Donald J. Trump pledged to uphold “our One China policy.”

It means that the United States only recognizes one legitimate government of China at a time. Prior to January 1, 1979, the United States recognized the “Republic of China” as the government of China. After 1979, the U.S. recognized the “People’s Republic of China” as the government of China.

Perhaps the most imaginative articulation of “our One China” is in formal testimony to the U.S. Congress by then-Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs James Kelly on April 21, 2004.

One member of Congress asked: “Can the evolution of full-fledged democracy on Taiwan and the clear emergence of a sense of Taiwanese identity meld with the principle of One China, or are they in stark contrast with each other?”

Secretary Kelly responded:

“… In my testimony, I made the point “our One China,” and I didn’t really define it, and I’m not sure I very easily could define it.”

“But I can tell you what it is not.”

“It is not the One China policy or the One China principle that Beijing suggests, and it may not be the definition that some would have in Taiwan…”

 

一個中國政策v.s.一個中國原則

北京堅守的「一個中國原則」內容如下:「世界上只有一個中國,而且台灣是中國的一部分。」相反的,其他國家–如美國–採用的「一個中國政策」則強調:「美國認知到中國對於台灣有所主張,但是美國並不承認中國對台灣主權的宣稱,僅僅『認知』到中國有該宣稱。」

在二零一七年的二月九日,美國總統川普聲明他會信守「我們(美國)的一中政策」。

這代表的意義是,美國承認世界上只有一個中國。在一九七九年一月一日前,美國承認中華民國為中國政府;但一九七九年之後,美國承認中國人民共和國才是中國政府。

目前為止,美國對於「我們的一中政策」最具想像力的發言,應是二零零四年四月二十一日時任亞太助卿凱利在國會的證詞。

當時一名國會議員問道:「台灣民主發展至今羽翼逐漸豐厚,清晰的台灣國族認同也開始浮現;這些現象是否能與『一個中國』的概念共存,或是兩者互相悖離?」

亞太助卿凱利如此回答:

「在我的證詞中,我提到『我們的一個中國』,但我沒有明確的定義它,況且我也不確定我能夠輕易的定義它。」

「但我能告訴你它不是什麼。」

「它並不是北京所宣稱的『一中原則』,或『一中政策』,並且它也可能不合於某些來自台灣的定義。」

(May 12, 2017) “One China Policy vs One China Principle” / 一個中國政策v.s.一個中國原則