DPP denies report of pressure from US
The China Post news staff and CNA
April 5, 2014, 12:09 am TWN
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday refuted hints from local media that United States officials have been exerting pressure on the party regarding its role in the ongoing student protest movement.
The analysis on the front page of the United Evening News cited alleged excerpts from five U.S. officials and academics: Richard Bush, former chairman of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), Alan Romberg, a professional on cross-strait affairs, Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Russel, David Brown, former acting chairman of the AIT and Rupert Hammond, the president of the U.S.-Taiwan Business Council.
According to former Taiwan representative to the U.S. Joseph Wu (吳釗燮), the main opposition party had by no means received pressure from the U.S., and Bush had not relayed any messages from the U.S. government.
In his recent visit to President Ma Ying-jeou, Bush was reported to have lauded the president on his “persuasive” speech made in a press conference on March 29, in which Ma responded — indirectly — to the student activists' calls.
Bush later met Wu and the DPP's International Affairs head Liu Shih-chung (劉世忠). Wu stated that the meeting was simply one between close friends and that the details were not to be disclosed.
“(The DPP) has not received any pressure from the U.S. concerning the Cross-Strait Trade in Services Agreement. This holds true for not only the AIT, but also of the DPP's representative office in Washington, D.C.,” Wu repeated.
Liu remarked that it did not come as a surprise that rumors indicating the DPP started the student movements began after King Pu-tsung (金溥聰), secretary-general of the National Security Council, returned to Taiwan from the U.S. “The government has been releasing propaganda via public relations agencies in the U.S. and its representative offices; the DPP has been making the same efforts for over a week as well,” said Liu.
The DPP invited over 40 representatives of other nations to Taiwan to elaborate on the party's stance regarding the pact and its version of the supervisory law that overlooked cross-strait agreements, said Liu. “America's attitude toward the pact has been unbiased so far and not leaning toward the Ma administration.”
US Disappointed by DPP?
Titled “America makes its move; Is U.S. disappointed by DPP?” the United Evening News released an analysis that told of a series of comments allegedly released by American officials and academics over the “Sunflower Movement” and the DPP's stance in the protest.
The article stated that an “important” U.S. official reportedly told Taiwan politicians that a group of U.S. politicians and scholars were disappointed in the party. Most of the said group was generally pro-DPP.
They think the DPP, instead of making serious preparations for winning power again, is trying to force President Ma Ying-jeou to step down by utilizing the current dispute, and it is doing it in a way that is undemocratic.
The protests show that Taiwan is a very open society with a high tolerance for the expression of political views, in which debate is not only allowed but encouraged, Russel was reported of saying.
Russel and his fellow commentators allegedly noted that the DPP may be trying to impeach Ma in the series of events, and that the DPP's so-called “boycotting” of the pact was not considered a legitimate citizen movement.