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Watching Hong Kong’s example, Taiwan poised to stand up to China

Tens of thousands of marchers protested against an unpopular extradition bill in Hong Kong on June 16.KIN CHEUNG/ASSOCIATED PRESS

The June 20 editorial “Hong Kong stands up for its freedoms, Congress stirs into action — and the president keeps quiet” raises many important issues regarding Hong Kong, but omits one crucial point with regard to Beijing’s failed autocratic scheme of “one country, two systems,” especially as it applies to Taiwan.

As the 2 million people of Hong Kong clearly demonstrated when they took to the streets, its residents are unwilling to give up any vestiges of freedom by the former British colony, only to live under mainland China’s authoritarian rule, the so-called one country, two systems framework. Just the thought of being handed over to mainland authorities arbitrarily under the proposed extradition law to face trial in China brought to the surface the underlying fear, dissatisfaction, and mistrust in Beijing.


Beijing has proposed the same failed system for Taiwan. Likewise, the government and people of Taiwan will never accept “one country, two systems” that would only guarantee Taiwan relinquish our hard-fought democratic freedoms and prosperous way of life. Instead, Taiwan joins our friends in Hong Kong, the United States, and from around the world to stand up as one to resist China’s attempts to undermine our shared values of freedom. Taiwan’s vibrant democracy serves as a beacon of hope and a reminder of what can be achieved when freedom prevails.

Douglas Y.T. Hsu


Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Boston