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September 24, 2017

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Indigenous peoples welcome Chen Yunlin

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Indigenous peoples of Taiwan extended their welcome to Chen Yunlin, chairman of the Association for Relations across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS) who arrived in Taipei yesterday.

In a half-page advertisement on the front page of the United Evening News, the indigenous peoples pointed out they are the "true masters" of the island who want the ARATS chairman to feel their "warm hospitality" and "friendship."

Chen is in Taipei at the head of a 60-member delegation for talks with his counterpart P.K. Chiang to further improve relations between Taiwan and China.

"We the indigenous peoples of Taiwan — who are the true masters of Taiwan — are happy to see anything and everything that will be conducive to the future development of Taiwan," said the advertisement by ten indigenous tribes. They include the Atayal, Paiwan, Bunun, Puyuma, Taroko, Tsou, Saisiyat, Kamaran, Rukai and Thao.

The advertisement continued: "We the indigenous peoples of Taiwan do not only welcome Mr. Chen Yunlin to tour Taiwan to feel the warm hospitality and friendship of the indigenous peoples but look forward also to Mr. Chen Yunlin's visit bringing Taiwan some substantial help."

Altogether 22 representatives of the ten tribes signed the advertisement to welcome the ARATS chairman and criticize the opposition Democratic Progressive Party for opposing that visit.

Taiwan seems to have turned itself into an island of violence, the representatives of the indigenous tribes pointed out in the advertisement.

"Democratic Progressive Party lawmakers say: 'We shouldn't be friendly to our enemy,'" the tribal leaders went on, adding:

"Then why don't they remember that the government on the (Chinese) Mainland and the people there who do not like the Democratic Progressive Party have treated you (DPP leaders) warmly, give you free lodging and boarding, as well as let you tour (freely)!

"Chen Shui-bian, Annette Lu, Frank Hsieh and many, many other lawmakers, councilmen and businessmen — you all have visited the Mainland. Though they (the people on the Mainland) do not agree with you, they did not call you names, insult you, push you over, nor threatened to arrest you 'as enemies.'"

Four centuries ago, the tribal leaders said, the indigenous peoples welcomed the Han Chinese immigrants. "Though you have disturbed our lives, we have gotten along with you well for 400 years," they added.

"Now," they asked, "when the Han Chinese like you, Mr. Zhang Mingqing and Mr. Chen Yunlin, came to Taiwan for a visit, those politicians who claim to love Taiwan did try to insult the guests in order just to score political gains.

"That's shameful!

"We the indigenous peoples will never treat guests like you!"

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