Taipei, Feb. 14 (CNA) Taiwan expressed gratitude Tuesday for China's condolences for the families of the dead and the injured in a Taipei tour bus crash a day earlier that left 33 people dead and 11 others injured.
On behalf of the government, the Cabinet-level Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said that it has extended its sympathy to the families of the victims and the injured and has been dealing with the aftermath. An investigation into the cause of the accident is also underway, it added.
In a statement, the Taiwan Affairs Office under China's State Council said it was very concerned about the accident, and it expressed its deepest condolences to the families of the dead and sympathy for the injured.
The statement came even though China has cut off its official communication channels with Taiwan amid strained relations across the Taiwan Strait.
Cross-strait relations have cooled since President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) took office in May 2016, mainly due to her refusal to heed Beijing's calls to recognize the "1992 consensus" as the sole foundation for cross-strait exchanges.
Monday's bus crash, in which both the bus driver and tour guide perished, was the worst national freeway accident in Taiwan's history. It is also Taiwan's deadliest road accident since Oct. 8, 1986, when a tour bus plunged into a ravine in central Taiwan, killing 42 people.
(By Elaine Hou and Chiu Kuo-chiang)