Mainland, Taiwan obligated to safeguard sovereignty
Updated: 2012-10-31 15:15
BEIJING - A mainland spokesman on Wednesday said that compatriots on both sides of the Taiwan Straits have concerted obligations to safeguard Chinese sovereignty over the South China Sea Islands and the Diaoyu Islands.
Yang Yi, spokesman for the State Council Taiwan Affairs Office, made the remarks while responding to questions from journalists at a press conference.
Answering a question, he said people from all walks of life on both sides of the Straits are welcome to come up with suggestions regarding cross-Straits cooperation on the South China Sea issue.
"We will be happy to see discussions over the topic by enterprises and non-government organizations from both sides of the Taiwan Straits," he added.
The official was asked to comment on a report issued by scholars from both the mainland and Taiwan that reportedly proposed including the South China Sea issue in topics for ARATS-SEF negotiations.
The Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS) and its Taiwanese counterpart, the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF), are two organizations that have been entrusted to handle cross-Straits affairs by mainland and Taiwan authorities.
In his reply to another question, Yang said the Diaoyu Islands are an inherent part of Chinese territory, and people on both sides of the Taiwan Straits have a concerted obligation to safeguard sovereignty over the islands.