Ma reiterates int'l recognition of ROC sovereignty
By Katherine Wei ,The China Post
December 3, 2013, 12:08 am TWN
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- President Ma Ying-jeou yesterday cited the Sino-Japanese Peace Treaty (中日和平條約) in saying that Taiwan is the rightful property of the Republic of China, and declared that related disputes should be ended.
Ma welcomed the attendees of the international forum which marked 70 years since the signing of the Cairo Declaration, including the granddaughter of the late UK Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill, Emma Mary Soames.
Aside from pronouncing that the Cairo Declaration is internationally legitimate even to this day, Ma said that “Taiwan undoubtedly belongs to the R.O.C.,” in response to many public voices claiming that the ownership of “Taiwan” is unclear and up for debate.
Nov. 30 marked the 70th anniversary of the signing of the Cairo Declaration, a declaration made by U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Republic of China Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, and UK Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill at a summit in Cairo, Egypt toward the latter part of World War II. The declaration bears a special significance for Taiwan, as it marked the first time the Republic of China, in officially requesting the return of its occupied territories from Japan, was presented as one of the four great powers of the world. The meeting also marked the first and only summit of 14 held during WWII at which Chiang was in attendance.
The declaration was announced on Dec. 1, 1943, with the Potsdam Declaration or the Proclamation Defining Terms for Japanese Surrender signed by the Allies the next year, said Ma. “According to the Potsdam Declaration, the agreements in the Cairo Declaration are to be carried out.”
“Also, Japan clearly stated in the Japanese Instrument of Surrender that it agrees to the Potsdam Agreement. The Cairo Declaration, Potsdam Declaration and the Japanese Instrument of Surrender are the same thing; they have been integrated into one. U.S. President Harry Truman reiterated the contents of the three documents once more in 1950, and stressed that the countries have all agreed that R.O.C. is the sovereign power ruling the island of Taiwan,” said Ma.
Many activists in Taiwan have argued that Taiwan's status as a country is still unsettled, as the Peace Treaty of San Francisco signed between the Allies and Japan in 1951 did not specify to whom Japan surrendered Taiwan to. The treaty was signed to end World War II. Ma explained that no Chinese representative had been invited to sign the treaty in San Francisco as the Chinese civil war was still ongoing at that time.
According to Ma, the Second Sino-Japanese War is the most important historical event for the Chinese people. Victory was achieved through unity among the people as well as with help from allies, which was why the summit and the Cairo Declaration marked a monumental milestone in the history of the Republic of China. It not only celebrated China's victory with the aids of allies, it also determined the Republic of China's status in the world through the reclamation of Japanese colonies.
“I think that the disputes about Taiwan's legal status should be ended,” Ma concluded.