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September 22, 2017

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WLFD encourages cross-strait exchanges

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Yao Eng-chi (饒穎奇), president of World League for Freedom and Democracy (WLFD), said WLFD has held several cross-strait exchanges in the past hoping that a sense of democracy will proliferate naturally and slowly in mainland China.

As WLFD celebrates its 60th anniversary, Yao expressed his opinions to local media about cross-strait exchanges.

Yao said he first led a delegation visit to mainland China, with stops in Beijing and Shanghai, in 2002. The delegation met Qian Qi-chen (錢其琛), former vice-premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China and Chen Yun-lin (陳雲林), former chief of the Taiwan Affairs Office. In the meeting, Yao expressed the Taiwanese public will for a peaceful cross-strait relationship. Yao also talked about direct flights between Taiwan and mainland China to benefit the economies of both sides at that time.

"It was a successful, ground-breaking trip which enhanced understanding on both sides," said Yao.

Yao was once the vice president of the Legislative Yuan and established a cross-strait exchange foundation in 2010 formed by retired representatives from different parties. The foundation has held conferences at least once a month to exchange opinions about cross-strait issues with members from the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.

With 24 years of experience in parliament, Yao said he would like to lead members of the Legislature to visit mainland China and hold conferences to discuss cross-strait issues. Although his goal will be hard to achieve, Yao thinks there will be a chance one day. Yao hopes that a sense of democracy will be naturally enhanced in mainland China through these kinds of events.

Yao also pointed out that democracy is not flawless and may be host to corruption or other scandals. However, it is possible to combine the advantages of democracy with the China system and develop a new form of democracy.

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