Our Associate Professor of International Relations, Dr Rosita Dellios, poses that the recent historic meeting between the Chinese and Taiwanese presidents after 66 years was no coincidence, rather part of a very well-studied Chinese strategy for the South China Sea.
Her writing was featured on the website APPS Policy Form.
“With all eyes on the South China Sea it is easy to forget Taiwan. But with the meeting of the two ‘Misters’ in Singapore recently – Chinese President Xi Jinping and Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou – it is possible to connect the nine-dash line to Taiwan. When Xi met Ma on neutral ground, in Singapore, they both agreed to avoid the contentious use of titles and simply call each other ‘Mister’ in front of their names.
That November meeting was symbolic in that no negotiations took place on reunification between the two estranged Chinas – the Republic of China (ROC) in Taiwan and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) on the mainland, which regards Taiwan as a renegade province. It was historic because the reality behind the façade of mister-diplomacy was that this was an unprecedented meeting between the top leaders of PRC and ROC, a meeting that had not taken place since the conclusion of the Chinese Civil War 66 years ago…”