Friday, February 18, 2005

Taiwan: US and Japan to declare on Saturday that they got Taiwan's back, this won't make China happy.

"Although it is likely to anger China, the move is being welcomed by Taiwan, which, despite having been occupied by Japan from 1895 to 1945, maintains an empathy for the Japanese that is rare in Asia. Elderly Taiwanese, for instance, still show delight in Japanese language and culture. Last month, Taiwan inaugurated its $3 billion, Japanese-built bullet train, which can reach speeds of almost 200 miles per hour. And in December, Japan angered China by granting a tourist visa to former Taiwanese president Lee Teng-hui, who was educated in Japan and had an emotional reunion here with a former professor. "This is the first time that Japan has made its stance clear; in the past, Japan has been very indirect on the Taiwan issue," said Koh Se-kai, Taiwan's special representative to Japan, which since 1972 has had formal relations with China but not with Taiwan. "We're relieved that Japan has become more assertive."

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