Taiwan will not back down on its sovereignty or compromise on freedom and democracy, and its people clearly oppose Beijing's idea of "one country, two systems" management for Taiwan, the self-ruled island's presidential office said on Sunday.
“Taiwan’s position is firm: no backing down on national sovereignty, no compromise on democracy and freedom, and meeting on the battlefield is absolutely not an option for the two sides of the Taiwan Strait,” it said in a statement.
The statement came shortly after Chinese President Xi Jinping said in a speech at the opening of a the Communist Party Congress in Beijing that it is up to the Chinese people to resolve the Taiwan issue and China will never renounce the use of force over Taiwan.
“This is the consensus of Taiwan’s people,” the presidential office said, adding the national security team was keeping a close eye on developments at the congress.
In her national day speech on Monday, Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen said war between Taiwan and China was not an option and reiterated her willingness to talk to Beijing, even as she pledged to keep boosting Taiwan’s defences.
Speaking to reporters on Sunday, Taiwan Premier Su Tseng-chang —who China put sanctions on last year, saying he was a separatist - said Mr. Xi should focus on his own people.
Referring to rare banners of political protest on an overpass in Beijing on Thursday, Mr. Su said, “Xi Jinping should pay attention to the smoke and protest banners on the Sitong Bridge in Beijing, rather than always thinking about using force to deal with Taiwan.”
China refuses to speak to Tsai, considering her a separatist.