ROC government announces details of 2017 campaign for UN participation

ROC government announces details of 2017 campaign for UN participation
Date: 2017/09/11    Data Source: Public Diplomacy Coordination Council
September 11, 2017

With regard to this year's campaign to gain further participation in the United Nations system, the government of the Republic of China (Taiwan), based on its steadfast diplomacy and the expectations of its people and following a careful review of all relevant factors, has decided to employ diverse channels and amplify its efforts, so as to clearly convey the heartfelt wishes of the 23 million people of Taiwan. Taiwan's UN campaign coincides with the 72nd UN General Assembly, which will commence on September 12 at UN headquarters in New York City, and the General Debate, which will take place from September 19 to 25.

The ROC government has requested that diplomatic allies speak up for Taiwan at the General Debate, and their permanent representatives to the UN will sign a joint letter to Secretary-General António Guterres, who assumed office in January this year, so that he gains a full understanding of the aims of Taiwan's UN campaign and deals with the issue of Taiwan's participation in the UN system in a fair manner consistent with the values of the UN Charter.

Taiwan's three main appeals for this year's UN campaign are as follows:

1. The UN should take action to improve the situation whereby the 23 million people of Taiwan are excluded from the UN system: Parties concerned should urge the UN to uphold the spirit of universality embedded in its Charter. In particular, efforts should be made to let Taiwan take part in an appropriate manner in UN specialized agencies dealing with cross-border issues that require the participation of and joint action by all relevant parties, in order to effectively respond to common global challenges.

2. The UN should end the discriminatory measures against Taiwanese that prevent them from entering UN premises to take part in tours or meetings: Parties concerned should demand that the UN Secretary-General maintain a neutral position and not serve the political interests of particular member states. Taiwanese should be allowed to enter UN premises when holding valid identification documents issued by their government. The unreasonable practice of demanding Taiwanese show a mainland China travel permit for Taiwan residents should be immediately abolished.

3. The UN should include Taiwan in meetings, mechanisms, and activities aimed at achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals: So as to be achieved by 2030, the SDGs emphasize inclusiveness and cooperation with relevant partners. Through international cooperation and development projects, Taiwan has long been involved in and implemented the Millennium Development Goals and SDGs. The UN should strive to ensure Taiwan's involvement in SDG-related meetings, mechanisms, and activities, so that no one is left behind.

To clearly convey Taiwan's appeals to the international community, Foreign Minister David Tawei Lee wrote an op-ed on the UN campaign that has been widely published in foreign media, solemnly calling on the UN to not exclude Taiwan. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs published a video on Taiwan's implementation of the SDGs entitled “Taiwan: A Partner for a Better World,” which stresses that only when the UN creates comprehensive partnerships with all relevant stakeholders including Taiwan can the SDGs be achieved by 2030.

Furthermore, Minister of the Environmental Protection Administration Lee Ying-yuan will travel to New York City, where he will take part in an international seminar and forum with young overseas compatriots organized by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in New York and release Taiwan's first Voluntary National Review detailing its implementation of the SDGs. All these activities will highlight Taiwan's commitment to sustainable development and contributions to the international community.

The government thanks the Legislative Yuan for organizing a delegation to monitor relevant proceedings during the UNGA. It is also grateful for the active efforts by many, including civic and overseas compatriot groups, in supporting Taiwan's participation in the UN, designing creative ways of promoting Taiwan's importance as a global partner during the UNGA, and expressing the will of the Taiwanese people.

Taiwan is ready and willing to take part in the UN system and interact and collaborate with all countries, so as to assist in safeguarding regional peace, strengthening economic development, and achieving the SDGs. The ROC government urges the UN to take seriously the fundamental right of the 23 million people of Taiwan to participate in the UN system; take action to improve the situation whereby Taiwan is excluded from the UN system; end the discriminatory measures against ROC nationals that prevent them from entering UN premises; and include Taiwan in meetings, mechanisms, and activities aimed at achieving the SDGs.