language selectLanguage:

  • Former president should retract Diaoyutai 'misstatement": Ma

    Taipei, Aug. 3 (CNA) In a rare rebuke of one of his predecessors, President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) on Monday demanded an apology from former President Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) for claiming that the Diaoyutai Islands belong to Japan instead of the Republic of China (ROC, Taiwan).

    In a letter to the China Times, one of Taiwan's major newspapers, Ma said that Lee should retract his "serious misstatement" on the islands in the East China Sea during a trip to Japan last month and apologize to the nation.

    Lee's comments "went against historic facts, the ROC Constitution and international law, hurt our people's feelings and caused serious damage to our national sovereignty and Taiwan's status as an entity," Ma said in the letter.

    It is Ma's first public reaction to Lee's comments during a press conference in Tokyo on July 23.

    Without naming Lee, Presidential Office spokesman Chen I-hsin (陳以信) said on July 24 that "any self-denial of the sovereignty of the Diaoyutai Islands would bring shame to the country and forfeit its sovereignty."

    (By Lee Shu-hua and Jay Chen)