By Lamin Cham
The Chargé d’Affaires at the Chinese Embassy in The Gambia, Zhou Ningyu has revealed that while the Gambia and China have over the last six years built and enjoyed sound relations as reliable partners based on the one-China policy, not all countries uphold international norms and justice, and honor their commitment.
Addressing a symposium at the Embassy attended by media, politicians among others, Mr Zhou stated that on 2 August, in disregard of China’s strong opposition and serious representations, the Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi visited China’s Taiwan region, with connivance and arrangement from the US Government. ”Such unscrupulous act seriously infringed upon China’s sovereignty, interfered in China’s internal affairs, breached the US’s commitments?to China, gravely undermined peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, and sent a seriously wrong signal to the separatist forces for Taiwan independence. China firmly opposes and sternly condemns this, and has made serious démarche and strong protest to the United States. China has also adopted a series of countermeasures,” Mr Zhou said. He said clearly, the visit of Pelosi to Taiwan is a grave provocation that upgraded substantive exchanges between the US and Taiwan and a serious violation of the one-China principle. Zhou argued that in 1979, the United States made a clear commitment in the China-US Joint Communiqué on the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations which states that the “The US recognises the Government of the People’s Republic of China as the sole legal Government of China and within this context, the people of the US will maintain cultural, commercial, and other unofficial relations with the people of Taiwan. Congress, as a part of the US Government, is inherently obliged to strictly observe the One-China Policy of the US Government and refrain from having any official exchanges with China’s Taiwan region,” the chargé d’Affaires said. He added that China is all along opposed to the visit to Taiwan by US congressional members, and the US executive branch has the responsibility to stop such visit adding that since Speaker Pelosi is the incumbent leader of the US Congress and the number three figure in the US Government, her visit to and activities in Taiwan, in whatever form and for whatever reason, is a major political provocation to upgrade US official exchanges with Taiwan. “China absolutely does not accept this, and the Chinese people absolutely reject this,” he said.
”Taiwan has been part of China’s territory since ancient times and history and legal facts are very clear about that. There are plenty of historical records and documents that show how the Chinese people developed Taiwan since ancient times. On October 1, 1949, The Central People’s Government replaced Chiang Kai-shek’s Republic of China Government and became the sole legal government representing the whole of China. But China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity remain unchanged, and the government of the People’s Republic of China fully inherited China’s sovereignty, including sovereignty over Taiwan. Although China’s complete reunification has not been achieved, China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity have never been divided and the fact that the two sides of the strait belong to one and the same China and that Taiwan is part of China has never changed,” Zhou argued.
The spokesman of the opposition United Democratic Party, assured the Chinese diplomat that his party believed in the UN Charter recognising the equal sovereignty rights of all nations without interference from anywhere. He said the UDP is proud that its leader Ousainu Darboe was the first foreign minister of the new government when most of the cooperation with China was being fully restored and cemented. Foday Jawara of the Ministry of local government narrated the long history of tangible relationship between The Gambia and China dating back to decades before its interruption in 1994. The National Assembly Member for Sabach Sanjal Alhagie Babou Ceesay advised the Embassy to interact more with the Gambian assembly especially the foreign affairs select committee. Lamin Cham editor of The Standard said he hoped that the escalation of tension as a result of Pelosi’s visit would not lead to violence.