Taipei: President Ma Ying-jeou says Taiwan`s voters may need to weigh in on any possible future peace treaty with rival China.
Ma`s statement on Thursday appears to be a retreat from his original peace treaty call three days earlier.
That call elicited criticism from Taiwan`s opposition and even from media supportive of his policies.
Ma`s new statement said "a high level of mutual trust" must precede any treaty and that a referendum may be necessary to prove it exists on the Taiwanese side.
Taiwan and China split amid civil war in 1949. Beijing still claims the island as its own, and threatens attack if it resists unification indefinitely.
Ma faces a tough bid for re-election in January, with the opposition accusing him of undermining Taiwanese sovereignty.