Xi Jinping Says China, Taiwan 'One Family' At Historic Summit

Chinese President Xi Jinping right shakes hands with Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou during a summit in Singapore

Chinese President Xi Jinping told Taiwan’s leader Ma Ying-jeou that the two sides are “one family” and cannot be pulled apart, as they began a landmark summit on Saturday in Singapore. “No force can pull us apart,” Xi told Ma. “We are one family.” Xi and Ma had earlier exchanged a historic handshake, smiling broadly and waving to a huge pack of assembled media before going behind closed doors.

Though the two sides still refuse to recognize each other's legitimacy, Xi and Ma posed for photographs from assembled media in Singapore.

"Since 2008, the cross-strait relations have moved on to a path of peaceful development, and have been increasingly stabilized in the past seven years, thanks to the efforts of many people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait", Xi said.

For one hour, Taiwanese president Ma Ying-jeou discussed cross-strait relations with his mainland counterpart Xi Jinping.

In a Thursday press conference, Ma said that the two sides would even split the bill for their hotel and meal costs.

President Ma's attempts to forge closer ties with China, mostly on the economic and trade front, have been greeted with a few suspicion in Taiwan, with student protesters a year ago storming and occupying Parliament for several weeks to demand the scrapping of a wide-ranging trade pact with Beijing.

CHINA-TAIWAN

Xi made sure nobody missed this extreme unbalance as Ma pleaded Xi to allow the relaxation of the diplomatic isolation imposed on Taiwan by Beijing and the military tension caused by China's missiles targeting the island along the 160-kilometer-wide Taiwan Straits.

Taiwan's membership in the AIIB should be predicated on dignity and parity, Chang said, adding that Beijing already knows that Taiwan will not accept anything less than "Chinese Taipei" as its official name to join the worldwide organization.

Taiwan has had de facto independence for the past 66 years, and for decades, the Nationalist-led government in Taipei regarded itself as the rightful leader of both Taiwan and mainland China, though in recent years it has dropped that position.

 

 

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