Taiwan will not seek UN membership this year: Foreign Ministry

Last Updated: Friday, September 4, 2009 - 18:30

Taipei: Taiwan will not attempt to seek
United Nations membership this year, officials said on Friday, in
a move one observer said was aimed at patching up ties with
Beijing after the Dalai Lama`s visit.

"Instead of asking our allies to submit a proposal to
join the United Nations, we will seek other kinds of
meaningful participation," said a foreign ministry official.
"It is a change of method but we will not give up the
Taiwan people`s right to join the UN."

The official was speaking as Tibetan spiritual leader
the Dalai Lama wrapped up a five-day visit to the island which
triggered protests and cancellations of activities by Beijing.

"I think the government is making a concession in a bid
to restore mutual trust with Beijing after the Dalai Lama`s
trip," said Hsu Yung-ming, a political scientist at Taipei`s
Soochow University.

Last year, Taipei made an attempt to join the World
Meteorological Organisation and other specialised UN agencies
rather than seeking full UN membership.

The bid, which failed, signalled a strategic
adjustment following the coming to power last year of
Beijing-friendly President Ma Ying-jeou.
Taiwan lost its UN seat to China in 1971 and Beijing
has thwarted all the island`s previous bids to return to the
world body as a full member.

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First Published: Friday, September 4, 2009 - 18:30

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