Only one China—Chinese Embassy spokesperson | Inquirer Opinion

Only one China—Chinese Embassy spokesperson

/ 12:01 AM October 27, 2014

II am writing to bring attention to the Oct. 9 edition of the Inquirer, which ran an item celebrating the so-called “Republic of China 103rd National Day.”

I wish to reiterate that the ONE CHINA policy is the political foundation for China-Philippine relationship, which includes the following principles:

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  1. Government of the People’s Republic of China is the sole legal government of China.
  2. There is only one China in the world and Taiwan is an integral part of China. Those principles are enshrined in the Joint Communiqué of the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of the Philippines on the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations signed in 1975.

During his state visit to China in 2011, President Aquino reiterated that the Philippine government shall adhere to the ONE CHINA policy. His solemn commitment was recorded in Article II of the Joint Statement of the Republic of the Philippines and the People’s Republic of China signed on Sept. 1, 2011.

The above-mentioned item, containing wordings such as “Republic of China,” “ROC” and “national day” and regarding Taiwan as a country, totally runs against the ONE CHINA policy and the commitment of the Philippine government.

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The Chinese Embassy wishes to maintain sound cooperation and friendship with the Inquirer as ever. In view of that, we sincerely hope that your good office could fully recognize the sensitivity of this issue, and see to it that such issue will never occur again.

—LI LINGXIAO,

spokesperson and deputy director

of political section,

Embassy of the People’s Republic of China

in the Republic of the Philippines

The Chinese Embassy protested the Oct. 9 issue of the Inquirer for being inconsistent with the One China Policy of the Philippine government, because it contained a paid advertisement celebrating “Republic of China 103rd National Day.”

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The Inquirer acknowledges the One China Policy enshrined, as Mr. Li states, in the 1975 Joint Communiqué between the Chinese and Philippine governments.

Please note, however, that the Joint Communiqué is a government-to-government agreement. The Inquirer is not a government office and is completely independent of the Philippine government. Under the 1987 Philippine Constitution, we are guaranteed the “freedom of speech, of expression, [and] of the press.” At the same time, we do not necessarily vouch for the contents of the paid advertisements that appear on our pages.

We note, likewise, that both the People’s Republic of China and “Taipei, China” are listed as distinct and separate members of an international organization, the Asian Development Bank, and that “Hong Kong, China” is likewise listed separately as an ADB member. We are happy to note that the People’s Republic of

China is able to join them in an international organization despite its own One China

position.

We note happily that the Chinese Constitution likewise ensures that “citizens of the People’s Republic of China enjoy freedom of speech, of the press, of assembly, of association, of procession and of demonstration.” It is truly wonderful that both Philippine and Chinese governments have committed themselves to respect press freedom.

We look forward, to borrow Mr. Li’s own words, to “maintain[ing] sound cooperation and friendship” with the Chinese Embassy on the basis of the Philippine and Chinese governments’ mutual commitment to press freedom.

—RAUL C. PANGALANGAN,

publisher, Inquirer

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