PM Gonsalves welcomes re-election victory of Taiwanese President

St. Vincent and the Grenadines, one of the handful of Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries to have diplomatic relations with Taiwan, has welcomed the re-election of President, Tsai Ing-wen, to a second term in office.

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President, Tsai Ing-wen (Photo: BBC)

Tsai, of the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party over the last weekend secured a 20-percentage point victory over her main challenger Han Kuo-yu, of the main opposition and pro-unification Kuomintang (KMT).

“I want to say how happy I am that yesterday, the electorate, the people of the Republic of China on Taiwan returned overwhelmingly to office our dear friend, President Tsai Ing-wen for a second consecutive term as president of Taiwan,” Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves told supporters of his ruling Unity Labour Party (ULP) at the party’s convention here on Sunday (Jan 12).

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Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves (Photo: OECS Press Room)

Gonsalves said he was pleased that Tsai’s DPP secured a majority in the legislative assembly in Taipei, adding “this means that their work, their excellent work will continue and so far as St. Vincent and the Grenadines is concerned, our cooperative programme will continue without any hiccups.

“We don’t have to go and negotiate or renegotiate anything over. What we have signed, we have signed and what we have agreed upon in this year and continuing, we have agreed upon in the certainty that there will be benefits for the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” said Gonsalves, who has been in office since March 2001, as his party prepares for a general election that is likely to take place later this year ahead of the March 2021 constitutional deadline.

St. Lucia’s Prime Minister Allen Chastanet also congratulated Tsai, whom he described as “a wonderful friend of St. Lucia …on her re-election.

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Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, St Lucia

“As a country, we remain extremely grateful for the many projects and vast assistance which Taiwan provides to St. Lucia and I look forward to the continued strengthening of cooperation and relations between our two countries during your new term,” Chastanet added.

Beijing reiterates “One China” policy

Over the weekend, Beijing issued a statement reiterating the need for a peaceful reunification of China.

China regards Taiwan as a renegade province and has been urging countries to adhere to the “One China” policy.

In a statement, the organization of the Chinese government in charge of Taiwan affairs, without mentioning the victory of Tsai said that the Chinese government adheres to the basic policy of peaceful reunification, “One Country, Two Systems”, and the One China principle.

It stressed that the government resolutely opposes any separatist schemes and acts for the independence of Taiwan and that Beijing is willing to work with its compatriots in Taiwan to promote the peaceful development of cross-strait relations and advance the peaceful reunification of the homeland.

It also said the government wants to jointly create a bright prospect for the great resurgence of the Chinese people based on a shared belief in the One China principle and opposition to Taiwan’s independence.