What is Taiwanese identity? It is an issue that has turned the island into one of the most dangerous flashpoints in Asia under eight years of Democratic Progressive party (DPP) rule, when President Chen Shuibian's pro-independence rhetoric strained relations with China to breaking point.
|Frank Hsieh, the DPP presidential candidate, |
will not compromise on Taiwanese identity
However, following a landslide victory by the opposition Kuomintang (KMT) in legislative elections on January 12, Ma Ying-jeou is strongly tipped to defeat DPP's Frank Hsieh in the March 22 presidential race. Ma's party favours a more conciliatory approach to cross-strait ties.
But how will today's Taiwanese identity affect the changing tunes in the political sphere? Unlike their forefathers, islanders no longer see themselves as people of a Chinese province waiting to reclaim the mainland.
In this and many other ways, Taiwan has evolved into a sovereign state in its own right, with its own identity.
So how can the next president move forwards while negotiating national interests and relations with China?
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This episode of 101 East aired on Thursday, March 13, 2008
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