Taiwan’s Guomindang Slams Tsai ing-wen for “Retrograde” Cross Strait Relations

The appointed chairman of Taiwan’s Guomindang (KMT) party Johnny Chiang today criticized President Tsai ing-wen in the midst of her inaugural speech at the beginning of her 2nd term, accusing her of having a lack of direction concerning the island’s future. In a publicized statement on the KMT website, Chiang criticized Tsai for falling short on a number of promises to the people of the island, highlighting that “cross-strait exchanges have seriously deteriorated”, describing them as “retrograde” and that her speech “fails to see how the future intends to rebuild cross-strait mutual trust”.

Although Chiang set out that rejection of a One Country, Two systems model was a “Taiwan consensus”, the chairman nonetheless accused Tsai of failing to manage cross-strait relations in line “accordance with the Constitution of the Republic of China” and stated that over the past four years the various symbols of that had effectively become invisible under leadership. He further criticizes the President as having “neglected the establishment of the Republic of China as early as 1912” as well as the historical roles of this government in World War I, II and its role as a founder of the United Nations.

The criticism comes amid Tsai ing wen and the Democratic People’s Party’s push for a more formal independence from Beijing which has provoked growing tensions with China’s leadership. Although the events of 2019 and the impact of the Hong Kong protests allowed Tsai to achieve re-election, her administration has continued to receive criticism for the economic and diplomatic costs her Foreign Policy has imposed on the island. Despite robust lobbying to Western governments, Taipei remained shut out of the World Health Assembly in Geneva.

Chiang proceeded to summarize his concluding: “the Republic of China is our common national identity” and that the Guomindang is “not only a defender of the Republic of China” but “also a practitioner of democracy, freedom and equal wealth in the Constitution”.