Taipei Times: DPP responds to spokeswoman’s ‘treason’ statement

President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) former re-election campaign spokeswoman, Lin Ching-yi (林靜儀), resigned on Friday after she came under fire for saying in an interview with German broadcaster Deutsche Welle on Thursday that, in terms of national sovereignty, proposing unification with a hostile power such as China constitutes “treason.”

The remarks were seen as highly controversial, coming just days after the DPP rammed an anti-infiltration law through the Legislature on Dec. 31 that criminalizes political activities backed by hostile foreign forces such as China.

The protection of Taiwan’s democratic systems and its way of life, and the rejection of any scenario in which the Republic of China would cease to exist, such as China’s “one country, two systems” formula, were matters of consensus among the nation’s 23 million people, the DPP said yesterday.

The DPP has walked hand-in-hand with Taiwanese for 30 years, fighting for political transformation, freedom from the one-party, authoritarian regime of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), and the establishment of a country free of fear, the DPP said.

Having become a mature democracy where freedom of speech is protected by law, Taiwan would not return to a period of “white terror,” it said.

No party, including the DPP, could make decisions on behalf of the public, it said.

Separately, Tsai said on Facebook that democracy has always been the party’s core value, and that it had never viewed differing political views as treasonous.

“Let me clearly state that our nation’s name is the Republic of China, and the sovereignty of that nation is in the hands of its 23 million people. Therefore, there is no issue involving the renaming of the country,” Tsai said.

Her most important responsibility as president is the defense of the nation’s sovereignty, freedoms and democratic way of life, she said.

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