MAC denies report of restrictions on Chinese visitors to Taiwan

2017/07/14 23:03:31 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
(CNA file photo)

(CNA file photo)

Taipei, July 14 (CNA) Taiwan's government has denied a report that it is planning to ban three types of Chinese visitors, saying Friday that it is still reviewing regulations on visits by Chinese nationals.

The Chinese-language China Times said the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC), the agency in Taiwan in charge of China policy, plans to block visits by Chinese provincial government officials responsible for Taiwan affairs and scholars who have made remarks against Taiwan.

The MAC will also more meticulously review applications to visit Taiwan by Chinese nationals with political and military backgrounds, the paper said.

MAC deputy chief Chiu Chui-cheng (邱垂正) responded that the report was false, saying there have been no Chinese scholars who have been blocked from visiting Taiwan because of criticizing Taiwan.

The government is still mulling possible measures on cross-strait exchanges after Panama switched diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing on June 13, Chiu said.

The MAC official said the government will review and adjust measures on cross-strait exchanges as necessary to reflect the development of relations across the Taiwan Strait.

He added that the MAC welcomes normal engagement across the strait but said Taiwan still has regulations on applications by Chinese nationals to visit Taiwan to safeguard its national interests.

Over the past year, Beijing has allowed fewer Chinese to study in Taiwan and prevented certain Taiwanese officials from visit China, Chiu noted, adding that it is China that is creating barriers in cross-strait exchanges.

He again urged China not to set any precondition for exchanges across the strait.

Following Panama's defection, the MAC said it will review the current regulations and laws regarding cross-strait ties and will not rule out monitoring cross-strait exchanges more tightly, including tighter screening of applications from certain Chinese visitors.

These include those who have hidden their identities and officials who have violated human rights and who apply to visit Taiwan to attend "highly political" activities, the MAC said.

(By Miao Chung-han and Elaine Hou)

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