Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen attends a ceremony to sign up for Democratic Progressive Party's 2020 presidential candidate nomination in Taipei, Taiwan. File photo/ Reuters
Taiwan’s pro-independence ruling party took a major step on Thursday toward nominating incumbent President Tsai Ing-wen - a thorn in the side of China - as its candidate for a second presidential term.
The Democratic Progressive Party announced that Tsai had won a primary over challenger William Lai, a former premier, in three days of polling. Her nomination is all but sure to be ratified by the party next week.
Tsai received approval from 35.7% of the roughly 15,000 people polled, and Lai got approval from 27.5%, party Chairman Cho Jung-tai told a news conference.
She would face a candidate from the opposition Nationalist Party in the January election.
Tsai, first elected in 2016, fell in opinion polls last year as Taiwanese worried about inaction toward China and stubborn domestic economic issues such as jobs and housing prices.
But she has gained momentum this year by hitting out at China over the Communist leadership’s insistence that it someday take control of Taiwan. The self-governing island split from China seven decades ago.
Chinese President Xi Jinping said in January that Taiwan should be ruled like Hong Kong, which is in the thick of street protests targeting Chinese control. Hong Kong is part of China, but has a measure of local autonomy.
Tsai’s Democratic Progressive Party embraces more autonomy for Taiwan rather than a tie-up with China.
The Nationalist Party advocates closer relations with Beijing. When it controlled the presidency from 2000 to 2008, the two sides signed more than 20 agreements covering trade, investment and transportation.Associated Press
A populist mayor who favours closer ties with Beijing was announced as the presidential candidate for Taiwan’s opposition on Monday as it looks to unseat President Tsai Ing-wen in upcoming elections.
In her meeting with Holcomb on Monday, President Tsai Ing-wen directly referenced Beijing's drills and called for like-minded countries to continue supporting Taiwan.
Tsai’s comments follow the conclusion of the twice-a-decade congress of China’s Communist Party at which it upped its long-standing threat to annex the island it considers its own territory by force if necessary.
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Of those hurt in the accident, 138 sustained minor injuries and a further 24 were still in hospital, the health ministry said. The blast blew out the windows of several houses in the surrounding area and damaged their interiors.
The initiative is inspired by the pioneering success of Dubai Police’s Smart Police Stations (SPS), which provide security and community services around the clock, without human intervention.
The meeting addressed cooperation between the UAE and the Comoros and opportunities to advance ties in the economic, trade, investment, and development fields to achieve the aspirations of the two countries and peoples.