The Republic of China, Taiwan is celebrating its national day today. The government of the country is currently based in the island of Taiwan, but it claims whole of China as its territory. Taiwan is an important partner of Bharat and in recent times the partnership has evolved into many new domains.
On 10th of October, 1911, an uprising against the Imperial Qing Dynasty in China sparked the revolution, which resulted in abolition of imperial rule after 2000 years and establishment of Republic of China in 1912. Sun Yat-Sen was sworn in as the first President of China. However, this transition was not peaceful and parts of China continued to be under different warlords. In time, two factions- the Kuomintang or Nationalist Party and the Communist Party emerged as most powerful of them.
A brutal civil war between the factions was interrupted by the Japanese occupation of Manchuria and parts of China. Two factions united to fight the Japanese. Kuomintang was under Sun’s successor General Chiang Kai-shek and Communists under Mao Zedong. After the Japanese were defeated in the second world war, the civil war was renewed and ultimately Kuomintang was forced to flee mainland China. The party leadership and its followers settled in Taiwan which was recognised as the legitimate China by US and its allied powers.
Taiwan also enjoyed the permanent seat at the UN Security Council for a considerable time as China. In 1971, the UN Resolution 2758 of 25 October 1971 recognized the People’s Republic of China as China’s sole representative in the United Nations and under Communist China’s “One China Policy”, slowly many countries ended diplomatic relations with Taiwan in 1970s. However, ROC, Taiwan maintains unofficial relations with most countries via de facto embassies and consulates called Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Offices (TECRO), with branch offices called “Taipei Economic and Cultural Offices” (TECO). New Delhi also has one such center, which issues visas to Bharatiya citizens who want to go to Taiwan.
At the same time, since 1960s Taiwan experienced rapid economic growth and it is known as “Taiwan miracle”. Taiwan is today an the largest economy that is not part of the United Nations. It has a population of about 2.5 crores and the country is a technology leader with firms such as Foxconn, HTC, Acer and Asus.
Taiwan’s relations with Bharat have always been warm. Lots of Bharatiyas, including students, live, study and work in Taiwan. Many Taiwanese companies have already made, or are in the process of making, significant investments in Bharat. In recent times, Bharat and Taiwan are seen to be in the same camp due to imperialist ambitions of China. Taiwanese have named it the “Milk-Tea alliance”.
In a way, independence of Taiwan is a guarantee of security of rest of Asia. China has to deploy significant amount of troops and military assets against Taiwan as it does not want Taiwan to declare independence. Although Taiwan is practically independent, China treats it as a breakaway territory and does not let Taiwan formally join the comity of free nations. It has warned invasion on the issue many a times and has been deterred only due to significantly strong Taiwanese forces as well as support of USA to Taiwan.
Bharat and Taiwan should deepen their strategic, technological, military and diplomatic partnership. The regime in Communist China needs to be opposed at every level and all the free democracies in its neighbourhood need to cooperate for the same.
Featured image : Twitter @digidiploTaiwan
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