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Referendum on 'proper name' for Olympics team is ridiculous: China Daily editorial

chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2018-11-18 20:14
A child waves a Chinese national flag and an Olympic flag during a ceremony to mark the arrival of the Olympic flag and start of the flag tour for the Winter Olympic Games Beijing 2022 at a section of the Great Wall of China on the outskirts of Beijing, Feb 27, 2018. [Photo/IC]

The referendum some political forces in Taiwan are seeking on "a proper name" for the island's athletes to participate in the Olympics is both absurd and dangerous.

Under the rules of the International Olympic Committee the island takes part in the Olympic Games under the name of "Chinese Taipei". Such a practice conforms to the one-China principle and makes it possible for athletes on the island to take part in international events as a team.

This technical arrangement the International Olympic Committee has made upholds the international consensus that there is only one China and Taiwan is part of it.

However, a small number of secessionists on the island is not satisfied with this, and they are trying to challenge the bottom line of the Chinese mainland by doing whatever they can to manifest their stand for the island's "independence", although it cannot be any clearer that any attempts in that direction will hit a dead end.

The Taiwan authorities' refusal to acknowledge the 1992 Consensus on the one-China principle has undoubtedly worsened the otherwise smooth development of cross-Straits relations. The Democratic Progressive Party, which is in office, has, to a large extent, connived with or even been behind the secessionists' "independence" antics.

What the DPP wants now is to divert people's attention from the local elections and from the declining approval rating for Taiwan leader Tsai Ing-wen. Even if the referendum does not work, they want to make trouble.

But if the island's authorities continue to maintain their stand of not acknowledging the one-China principle and give tacit support to secessionist maneuvers such as this "referendum", it is not hard to imagine what will be the outcome for cross-Straits relations.

What the DPP and Taiwan authorities fail to recognize is the fact that more people on the island suffer from the worsening cross-Straits relations the less inclined they will be to buy what they are touting.

Since they are losing support because of the way they have chosen to deal with the mainland, how can this referendum reverse the trend in their favor?

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