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INTERNATIONAL > East Asia & Pacific

Japan voices support for Taiwan’s participation in WHO meeting

  • May 9, 2017
  • , Kyodo News , 1:11 p.m.
  • English Press
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TOKYO — The Japanese government expressed its support Tuesday for Taiwan’s participation in the decision-making body of the World Health Organization, following Taiwan’s exclusion from an annual meeting to be held later this month under pressure from China.


“We feel Taiwan’s participation in the WHO in some form is desirable in order to strengthen (the world’s) response to dangers to public health,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a press conference.


Taiwan has been attending the World Health Assembly as an observer for the past eight years under the name of “Chinese Taipei,” but has not received an invitation to participate in this year’s gathering in Geneva beginning on May 22. Online registration closed Tuesday.


“The government has consistently supported (Taiwan’s) participation as an observer, and there is no change to that support,” Suga said.


China, which regards Taiwan as a renegade province awaiting reunification, has maintained that Taiwan must observe the “one China” principle in its participation in international organizations.


But a change of government on the self-ruled island in May last year has seen Taiwan refrain from recognizing a consensus reached with China in 1992 that both sides of the Taiwan Strait belong to one China.


“We are naturally aware that China is sticking to its ‘One China’ principle in its relations and in dealing with problems, but it is our consistent stance that the issue of Taiwan should be peacefully resolved through direct dialogue between the parties concerned,” Suga said.

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