Taiwan urges citizens to avoid travel to China, Hong Kong, Macao

Taiwan urges citizens to avoid travel to China, Hong Kong, Macao

/ 02:22 PM June 28, 2024

Taiwan urges citizens to avoid travel to China, Hong Kong, Macao

This photograph shows ‘Taipei 101’, Taiwan’s tallest skyscraper, a 508-meter high commercial building, in Taipei, on May 22, 2024. Agence France-Presse

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Taiwan has urged its citizens to avoid travel to China and the semi-autonomous Chinese territories of Hong Kong and Macao following threats from Beijing to execute supporters of the self-governing island democracy’s independence.

Spokesperson and deputy head of the Mainland Affairs Council Liang Wen-chieh issued the advisory at a news conference Thursday.


That came amid growing threats from China, which claims Taiwan as its own territory to be annexed by force if necessary.


READ: China warns of Taiwan ‘war’ as military drills encircle island

China’s threat to hunt down and execute “hardcore” Taiwan independence supporters follows the election of Lai Ching-te of the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party as president. China has refused all contact with Taiwan’s government since the election in 2016 of former president Tsai Ing-wen of the DPP, who refused to endorse Beijing’s demand that Taiwan recognizes itself as a part of China, seen as a prelude to political unification between the sides.

“In response to the new guidelines related to the so-called ‘secession crime,’ the government has the responsibility to remind citizens that there are genuine risks involved” in such visits, Liang said. The government is not banning visits, but those that do travel should not express political opinions or carry books or post online about topics that the authoritarian Communist Party would use to detain and potentially prosecute them.

READ: China holds military drills around Taiwan as ‘punishment’

Hundreds of thousands of Taiwanese live in China or travel their for business, tourism or family visits each year. China has also hosted visits by local Taiwanese officials and leaders of the opposition Nationalist Party, which backs eventual unification between the sides.

The sides operate direct flights and mainland Chinese are permitted to visit, although Beijing has severely restricted tourism to the island as a means of bringing economic pressure on the government in addition to its threatening military exercises and the daily deployment of warships and military planes around the island.

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TAGS: China, Taiwan

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