Opposition People First Party Chairman James Soong (???) flew from Taiwan to New York on Tuesday, where he spent the night before continuing on to Lima, Peru for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders' Meeting.
Soong, who is serving as President Tsai Ing-wen's (???) envoy to the APEC summit, was welcomed by American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Chairman James F. Moriarty and Taiwan's Representative to the United States Stanley Kao (???) at John F. Kennedy International Airport.
Soong is being accompanied by Taiwan's delegation to the annual APEC event along with his daughter Soong Cheng-mai (???). They are scheduled to leave New York on a flight at 8 a.m. Wednesday to continue the journey to Lima.
As Taiwan's envoy to the APEC leaders' meeting slated for Nov. 19-20 in Lima, Soong has expressed the hope of meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping (???) during the summit.
But that may not happen, according to a spokesman for China's Taiwan Affairs Office.
Ma Xiaoguang (???) reiterated in Beijing on Wednesday that the two sides of the Taiwan Strait cannot conduct any "positive interactions of substantial meaning" while Taiwanese authorities do not recognize the "1992 consensus."
Beijing has insisted that Tsai's government accept the "1992 consensus" that underpinned Taiwan-China relations during the eight years Tsai's predecessor, Ma Ying-jeou (???), was in office, something Tsai and her Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) have been unwilling to do.
Because of China's hard-line position, cross-strait relations have cooled since Tsai took office May 20.
The "1992 consensus" refers to a tacit understanding reached in 1992 between China and Taiwan, under the then Kuomintang government, that there is only one China, with both sides free to interpret what that means.
This year's APEC meeting will be held under the theme of "Quality Growth and Human Development," and will focus advancing regional economic integration, enhancing regional food markets, working on the modernization of micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises, and developing human capital.
Taiwan's president has traditionally been blocked by Beijing from attending the summit because of China's claims that Taiwan is part of its territory and not a sovereign state, forcing Tsai and her predecessors to send envoys to the annual summit in their place.
Aside from Soong, members of this year's Taiwanese delegation include Economic Affairs Minister Lee Chih-kung (???), National Development Council chief Chen Tain-jy (???) and People First Party legislative caucus whip Lee Hung-chun (???).
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel