Untying cross-Straits knot

Updated: 2014-02-19 07:05

(China Daily)

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Just days after the historic meeting between the mainland's and Taiwan's chief overseers of cross-Straits ties, Lien Chan, honorary chairman of the Taiwan-based Kuomintang, arrived in Beijing with a group of Taiwan dignitaries.

In spite of the unofficial nature of this trip, Lien's 15th to the mainland, Lien and his entourage have received what only the most favored guests could have anticipated - a meeting with Party General Secretary Xi Jinping.

Which is appropriate, as the well-venerated Lien is a key pusher and driver of cross-Straits rapport, while Xi, through his work in Fujian province, which is a strip of water away from Taiwan, has unusual personal experience of cross-Straits affairs. More importantly, they were discussing things all people of Chinese origin should consider domestic. In Xi's words, people on both sides of the Straits are "born blood relatives".

Xi's remarks indicate that the leadership in Beijing is keen on making fresh headway in cross-Straits relations, and he conveyed the reassuring message that Beijing has sufficient respect for Taiwan's sensibilities.

Xi's prescription for healing the historical estrangement - a combination of fraternal feelings, sincerity, patience and confidence - is a sensible one that will pay off in the long run. His promises to let compatriots in Taiwan share the opportunities brought forth by the mainland's progress first, as well as to let grassroots Taiwanese benefit more from the cross-Straits rapport, are conducive to building trust and eliminating ill feelings.

With people on both sides communicating more closely, "there will be no knot that can't be untied", as Xi said.

While reiterating the fundamental significance of the "one-China" consensus as the "anchor" of cross-Straits ties, Xi pledged "fair and reasonable arrangements for equal consultation" with Taipei regarding deep-seated political divergences. Which may help remove one of the toughest obstacles to the long-awaited political negotiations across the Straits.

Xi's renewed invitation and welcome to all people in Taiwan willing to contribute to the betterment of cross-Straits relations, "whoever he or she is, whatever he or she had advocated", is a timely boost to solidarity-building across the Straits.

When more hands join together across the Straits, there is no way the two sides cannot overcome the decades-old political divide.

(China Daily 02/19/2014 page8)