Contents


Resolution on the Representation of China in the United Nations

Adopted by the 1913th plenary session of General Assembly on
20 November 1970 by a vote of 66-52-7

  

Resolution 2642 (XXV)

Ref:2500(XXIV), 2389(XXIll), 227l(XXIl), 2159(XXI), 202(XX),1668(XVI),1493(XV), 1351(XIV), 1239(XIII), 1135(XII), 1108(XI), 990(X), 903(IX), 800 (VIII), 501(V), 490(V)

 

THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY,

Recalling the recommendation contained in its resolution 396 (V) of 14 December 1950 that, whenever more than one authority claims to be the Government entitled to represent a Member State in the United Nations and this question becomes the subject of controversy in the United Nations, the question should be considered in the light of the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations and the circumstances of each case,

Recalling further its decision in resolution 1668 (XVI) of 13 December 1961, in accordance with Article 18 of the Charter, that any proposal to change the representation of China is an important question, which, in General Assembly resolutions 2025 (XX) of 17 November 1965, 2159 (XXI) of 29 November 1966, 2271 (XXII) of 28 November 1967, 2389 (XXIII) of 19 November 1968 and 2500 (XXIV) of 11 November 1969, was affirmed as remaining valid,

Affirms again that this decision remains valid.

1913th plenary meeting
20 November 1970

Source: Resolutions and Decisions of the United Nations General Assembly 25th Session.

Resolution on the Restoration of the Lawful Rights of the People's Republic of China in the United Nations

Adopted by the 1967th plenary session of General Assembly on
25 October 1971 by a vote of 76-35-17

 

Resolution 2758 (XXVI)

THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY,

Recalling the principles of the Charter of the United Nations,

Considering the restoration of the lawful rights of the People's Republic of China is essential both for the protection of the Charter of the United Nations and for the cause that the United Nations must serve under the Charter.

Recognizing that the representatives of the Government of the People's Republic of China are the only lawful representatives of China to the United Nations and that the People's Republic of China  is one of the five permanent members of the Security Council,

Decides to restore all its rights to the People's Republic of China and to recognize the representatives of its Government as the only legitimate representatives of China to the United Nations, and to expel forthwith the representatives of Chiang Kai-shek from the place which they unlawfully occupy at the United Nations and in all the organizations related to it.

1967th plenary meeting
25 October 1971

Source: Resolutions and Decisions of the United Nations General Assembly 26th Session.


Official Proposal for the U.N. General Assembly to review General Assembly resolution 2758 (XXVI)

8 July 1998

United Nations

A/53/145
Distr.: General
8 July 1998
Original: English

General Assembly
Fifty-third session

 

Request for the inclusion of an item in the provisional agenda of the fifty-third session

Need to review General Assembly resolution 2758 (XXVI) of 25 October 1971 owing to the fundamental change in the international situation and to the coexistence of two Governments across the Taiwan Strait

Letter dated 8 July 1998 from the representatives of Burkina Faso, El Salvador, the Gambia, Grenada, Liberia, Nicaragua, Sao Tome and Principe, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Senegal, Swaziland and Solomon Islands to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General

 

Excellency,

                        Upon the instruction of our respective Governments, we have the honour to request you, pursuant to rule 13 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, to include an item in the agenda of the fifty-third session of the Assembly entitled "Need to review General Assembly resolution 2758 (XXVI) of 25 October 1971 owing to the fundamental change in the international situation and to the coexistence of two Governments across the Taiwan Strait". Pursuant to rule 20 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, we attach an explanatory memorandum (see annex I) and a draft resolution (see annex II).

Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of our highest consideration.

Michel Kafando
Permanent Representative of Burkina Faso to the United Nations

Ricardo G. Castaneda-Cornejo
Permanent Representative of El Salvador to the United Nations

Baboucarr-Blaise Ismaila Jagne
Permanent Representative of the Gambia to the United Nations

Robert E. Millette
Permanent Representative of Grenada to the United Nations

Famatta Rose Osode
Charge' d'affaires a.i. Permanent Mission of the Republic of Liberia to the United Nations

Enrique Paguaga Fernandez
Permanent Representative of Nicaragua to the United Nations

Domingo Augusto Ferreira
Charge' d'affaires a.i. Permanent Mission of Sao Tome and Principe to the United Nations

Herbert G. V. Young
Permanent Representative of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines to the United Nations

Ibra Deguene Ka
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Senegal to the United Nations

Moses Mathendele Dlamini
Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Swaziland to the United Nations

Rex Stephen Horoi
Permanent Representative of Solomon Islands to the United Nations

 

ANNEX I

Explanatory Memorandum

1. Since the division of China almost half a century ago, two Governments have ruled over the two parts of China

The Republic of China, founded in 1912, was divided in 1949 as a result of civil war. In that same year, the People's Republic of China was established in Beijing, and the Government of the Republic of China moved to Taiwan. Since then, the Republic of China and the People's Republic of China have coexisted as two parts of China, with neither subject to the other's rule.

Over that half century, each side has developed its own political systems, social values and foreign relations, an exceptional situation in the international community. In these circumstances, the concept of "governmental succession" under traditional international law is not at all applicable to the case of the Republic of China.

2. Resolution 2758 (XXVI) adopted by the General Assembly in 1971 violates the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Republic of China, a charter Member of the United Nations, participated conscientiously in all the activities of the Organization from 1945 to 1971. However, in 1971, as a result of the adoption of resolution 2758 (XXVI) by the General Assembly, the Republic of China's seat in the United Nations was transferred to the People's Republic of China. That action had the effect of depriving the Government and the people of the Republic of China of their right to participate in the activities of the United Nations and related agencies, as well as in other important international organizations.

For example, the Republic of China is not allowed to participate in the World Bank or International Monetary Fund. During the recent East Asian financial crisis, it was therefore unable to work formally with neighbouring countries to attenuate the severity of the crisis. In the health field, an outbreak of enteroviral infection attacked children in Taiwan in May and June of this year, resulting in 52 deaths and hundreds of cases of severe complications. Because it is not a member of the World Health Organization, another result of resolution 2758 (XXVI), the people of the Republic of China were left alone to fight against the virus.

The United Nations, as the focal organization for global involvement in virtually every field, including the environment, disarmament, international law, drug control, human settlements, sustainable development and the protection of human rights, requires the participation and cooperation of all nations in order to provide sound and universally beneficial solutions. The United Nations is the forum where the opinions of world citizens are voiced and policies developed. However, the voice of the people of the Republic of China is not heard.

This denial of these rights violates the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the United Nations in 1948, which advocates that "Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration ... Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs".

3. The Republic of China meets all requirements for membership in the United Nations.

The Republic of China has a defined territory, a population of 21.8 million (greater than that of two thirds of the Members of the United Nations), and a Government which has the capacity to fulfil international obligations. It therefore meets all prerequisites for statehood.

In addition, the Republic of China on Taiwan is a strong global economic power. The following statistics speak for themselves: twentieth largest economy in terms of gross national product, at over $285 billion; fourteenth most important trading nation; a prime global investor and the second largest investor in East Asia; one of the top holders of foreign exchange reserves; and a per capita gross domestic product income, at purchasing power parity, of $15,370.

The Republic of China also has an exemplary record of altruistic aid in donations and technical assistance to developing nations. Over the years it has sent over 10,000 experts to train technicians all over the world, especially in Asia, the South Pacific, Latin America and Africa, to help develop their agricultural, fishery and livestock industries. It has also provided over $130 million in disaster relief throughout the world in the past several years and has even contributed indirectly to the United Nations call for aid during the Persian Gulf War and for the relief and rehabilitation of children in Rwanda.

Currently the Republic of China is contributing capital to regional development programmes through institutions such as the Asian Development Bank, the Central American Bank for Economic Integration, the Inter-American Development Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

From these major indicators, it is clear that the Republic of China has been playing a positive role in the international community, a fact which merits recognition by the United Nations.

4.  The international situation has changed fundamentally in the past quarter century, as has the political orientation of the Republic of China.

Resolution 2758 (XXVI) was a product of ideological confrontation during the cold war era, when both the Republic of China and the People's Republic of China were claiming to be the sole legal Government of China. The cold war has ended, with constructive dialogue and negotiation having replaced the hostile confrontation of the past.

Following a series of political reforms that have made it a true democracy, the Republic of China today embraces a political philosophy that is totally different from that which it espoused in the years immediately preceding and following its exclusion from the United Nations. It is determined to find a solution to the question of China's division by peaceful means. As to its return to the United Nations, the Government has made it clear that it no longer claims to represent all of China, but that it seeks representation only for its 21.8 million people.

5.  Parallel representation in the United Nations by the two sides of a divided nation poses no barrier to unification, indeed, it can be conducive not only to unification but also to regional security and world peace.

As a global organization, the United Nations should not ostracize any member of the global village. The cases of the now unified East Germany and West Germany and the still divided South Korea and North Korea serve as precedents for parallel representation of divided nations in the United Nations. The exchanges between the two parts of Germany via the United Nations and other international organizations undoubtedly contributed to their peaceful unification in 1990.

Since their separation half a century ago, the Republic of China and the People's Republic of China have developed under two different systems of political and social values. Until unification is achieved, the Republic of China is entitled to have its own representation in the United Nations. In the meantime, however, the People's Republic of China does not in any way represent the 21.8 million people of the Republic of China.

The geographic location of the Republic of China makes it a focal point of the Asia-Pacific region, so its sense of security and its commitment to cooperation and peace are critical to the stability of the region as a whole.

6. The General Assembly should address the unjust situation created by the adoption of resolution 2758 (XXVI) and restore to the people of the Republic of China their lawful right to participate in the United Nations and all of its activities.

The perpetuation of resolution 2758 (XXVI) is the main obstacle barring the Republic of China from the United Nations. It totally ignores the fact that China has been divided into two separate political entities and that each of them exercises jurisdiction over a portion of Chinese territory.

A review by the General Assembly of its resolutions is not without precedent. In 1950, the General Assembly adopted resolution 386 (V) to overturn resolution 39 (I), which had barred Spain's participation in the activities of the United Nations. The revocation in 1991 of resolution 3379 (XXX) is another example.

In the current international situation, the continued exclusion of the Republic of China from the United Nations is archaic, unjust and unwarranted. The resolution that perpetuates this exclusion must be reviewed, with a view to restoring to the 21.8 million people of the Republic of China their right to participate in all the activities of the United Nations.

 

ANNEX II

Draft Resolution

 

The General Assembly,

    Reviewing its resolution 2758 (XXVI) of 25 October 1971 on the representation of China at the United Nations and noting that, as a result of that resolution, the Republic of China on Taiwan, which represents 21.8 million Chinese people, has been excluded from the United Nations,

    Recognizing that, since 1949, China has been divided and that since that time two separate Governments have been exercising jurisdiction over their respective parts of China, that is, mainland China and Taiwan,

    Acknowledging that the Republic of China is a responsible member of the international community, with a fully democratic system and a strong, dynamic economy, whose participation in the United Nations would benefit the international community,

    Observing that the geographic location of the Republic of China on Taiwan makes its national security vital to the stability of the East Asian and Pacific regions,

    Mindful of the fact that, while seeking to participate in the United Nations, the Republic of China continues to espouse hope for the eventual reunification of China,

    Affirming the obligation of the global community to recognize and fully respect the fundamental rights of the 21.8 million Chinese people who are under the jurisdiction of the Republic of China,

    Noting the declaration of the Government of the Republic of China that it accepts without condition the obligations laid down in the Charter of the United Nations and that it wishes sincerely to contribute to the promotion and maintenance of international peace and security,

hereby

Decides to revoke the part of the decisions contained in its resolution 2758 (XXVI) excluding the Republic of China from the United Nations and to allow the Republic of China on Taiwan to participate in the United Nations, thereby restoring to the Government and the people of the Republic of China all their lawful rights at the United Nations and in all the organizations related to it.

 Source: United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA)


Official Proposal for the U.N. General Assembly to Study R.O.C. Participation in the United Nations

11 August 1999

Excellency,

Upon the instruction of our respective Governments, we have the honour to request you, pursuant to rule 14 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, to include a supplementary item in the agenda of the fifty-fourth session of the Assembly entitled "Need to examine the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan, to ensure that the fundamental right of its twenty-two million people to participate in the work and activities of the United Nations is fully respected." Pursuant to rule 20 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, we attach an explanatory memorandum (see annex I) and a draft resolution (see annex II).

Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of our highest consideration.

[signatures not reproduced here]

ANNEX I

Explanatory Memorandum

1. Each side of the Taiwan Strait has been ruled by a distinct and separate Government since 1949.

The Government of the Republic of China, which was founded in 1912, moved to Taiwan in 1949. That same year, the People's Republic of China was established on the Chinese mainland. Since then, the Republic of China on Taiwan and the People's Republic of China on the mainland have coexisted on their respective side of the Taiwan Strait, with neither subject to the other's rule. Over that past half century, each side has developed its own political system, social values and foreign relations. Therefore, each of these two Governments can only speak for and represent the people actually under its jurisdiction on its respective side of the Taiwan Strait.

2. The General Assembly of the United Nations adopted Resolution 2758 (XXVI) in 1971 to confer United Nations membership upon the People's Republic of China. The Resolution, however, did not address the issue of representation in the UN for the people of the Republic of China on Taiwan.

From 1950 to 1971, the United Nations considered the question of China representation. The question was considered against the background of political and ideological confrontation created by the Cold War. In October 1971, at its twenty-sixth session, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution 2758 (XXVI), which decided that the China seat would be taken by the People's Republic of China. This Resolution, however, failed to address the issue of legitimate representation for the people on Taiwan in the UN.

3. The Republic of China, a country with significant achievements, is a constructive and responsible member of the international community.

The Republic of China on Taiwan has coexisted with the People's Republic of China on the Chinese mainland since 1949 and has been a successful and responsible member of the international community. In fact:

From these major indicators, there is no doubt that the Republic of China has been playing a positive role in promoting world trade and in eradicating poverty. It is indeed a constructive and responsible member, a fact that merits recognition by Members of the United Nations.

4. The Republic of China is a free and democratic country. The United Nations should consider with an open mind the appeal of its twenty-two million people for their own representation in the Organization.

Resolution 2758 (XXVI), a product of the Cold War era, fails to provide for the right of the twenty-two million people of the Republic of China on Taiwan to representation by their actual and legitimate delegates in the UN and its related organizations.

However, tremendous changes have taken place in the past two decades. The Cold War has ended, with constructive dialogue and negotiation replacing the hostile confrontation of the past. As an international organization in which every country is represented, where Palestine has achieved a unique status and other entities have been given a place to speak for their peoples, the United Nations should now address this unreasonable and untenable situation.

The Republic of China on Taiwan has carried out a series of political reforms over the past decade or so. Today its people enjoy a high degree of freedom and democracy. It is also determined to find a way to develop cross-strait relations by peaceful means. The Government of the Republic of China on Taiwan seeks a reasonable role in the United Nations and its related organizations by which it can represent the twenty-two million people on Taiwan. Members of the United Nations should consider with an open mind the appeal of these twenty-two million people for their participation in that Organization.

5. The participation of the Republic of China on Taiwan in the United Nations poses no barrier to the future peaceful and democratic unification of a divided China; indeed, it can be conducive to regional peace and security.

Since 1949, the Republic of China on Taiwan and the People's Republic of China on the mainland have developed under two different systems of political and social values. The People's Republic of China has never exercised any control over the twenty-two million people on Taiwan. Therefore, the citizens of the Republic of China on Taiwan are entitled to their own actual and legitimate representation in the United Nations.

The geographical position of Taiwan makes it a focal point of the entire Asia-Pacific region. Accordingly, the stability of the Taiwan Strait and its periphery is vital to the maintenance of peace and security for the region in particular and the world in general. A role for the Republic of China on Taiwan in the United Nations would bring the area under the peace and security mechanism contained in the United Nations, thus enhancing the maintenance of peace and security in the region.

The cases of the now unified East Germany and West Germany, and the still divided Republic of Korea and Democratic People's Republic of Korea, serve as precedents for parallel representation of divided nations in the United Nations. The exchanges between East Germany and West Germany via the United Nations and other international organizations contributed not only to regional peace and security, but also to their peaceful unification in 1990. As a universal organization, the United Nations should therefore encourage both sides of the Taiwan Strait to work and cooperate in that Organization and its related organizations.

6. The United Nations General Assembly should act to ensure that the voice of the twenty-two million people on Taiwan is heard in the United Nations and its related organizations.

Resolution 2758 (XXVI) does not constitute a comprehensive, reasonable and just solution. It only settled the issue of representation for the people on the Chinese mainland, while failing to accommodate the aspirations of twenty-two million people on Taiwan to participate in the work and activities of the most important global organization-the United Nations and its related organizations.

The exclusion of the Republic of China on Taiwan from the United Nations is anachronistic, unjust and potentially injurious to international peace and security. The United Nations must address this situation in order to ensure that the twenty-two million people of the Republic of China have a direct and representative voice in the Organization and its related agencies. A role in the United Nations for the Republic of China would benefit that Organization in particular and the international community in general via the mechanisms provided in that Organization.

 

ANNEX II

Draft Resolution

 

The General Assembly,

    Considering the fact that the twenty-two million people of the Republic of China on Taiwan have no actual and legitimate representative in the United Nations;

    Recognizing that since 1949 the Government of the Republic of China has exercised effective control and jurisdiction over the Taiwan area while the Government of the People's Republic of China has exercised effective control and jurisdiction over the Chinese mainland during the same time period;

    Acknowledging that the Republic of China on Taiwan is a constructive and responsible member of the international community, with a democratic system and a strong, dynamic economy, whose participation in the United Nations would benefit the international community;

    Observing that the geographical location of Taiwan is vital to the peace and security of the East Asian and Pacific regions;

    Mindful of the fact that, while seeking to participate in the United Nations, the Republic of China continues to espouse hope for the eventual unification of China;

    Noting the declaration of the Government of the Republic of China on Taiwan that it accepts without condition the obligations contained in the Charter of the United Nations and that it is able and willing to carry out those obligations; and

    Affirming the significance that recognition of and respect for the fundamental rights of the twenty-two million people of the Republic of China on Taiwan would have for upholding the principles and spirit of the Charter of the United Nations;

hereby

  1. Decides to establish a working group of the General Assembly with the mandate of examining thoroughly the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan, in order to ensure that its twenty-two million people participate, with a direct and representative voice, in the Organization and its related agencies; and
  2. Requests the working group to commence its work during the fifty-forth session of the General Assembly, and make appropriate recommendations for an equitable and practical solution to the question of the participation of the Republic of China in the United Nations.

 Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of China


Official Proposal for the U.N. General Assembly to examine the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan

4 August 2000

 

United Nations 

A/55/227

General Assembly

Distr.: General
4 August 2000

Original: English

Fifty-fifth session

Request for the inclusion of a supplementary item in the agenda of the fifty-fifth session

Need to examine the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan, to ensure that the fundamental right of its twenty-three million people to participate in the work and activities of the United Nations is fully respected

Letter dated 3 August 2000 from the representatives of Burkina Faso, the Gambia, Grenada, Honduras, Malawi, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Nicaragua, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Senegal, Solomon Islands and Swaziland to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General

Upon the instruction of our respective Governments, we have the honour to request, pursuant to rule 14 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, the inclusion in the agenda of the fifty-fifth session of the Assembly of a supplementary item entitled "Need to examine the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan, to ensure that the fundamental right of its twenty-three million people to participate in the work and activities of the United Nations is fully respected”. Pursuant to rule 20 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, we attach an explanatory memorandum (see annex I) and a draft resolution (see annex II).

 

(Signed) Michel Kafando
Permanent Representative of Burkina Faso to the United Nations

(Signed) Baboucarr-Blaise Ismaila Jagne
Permanent Representative of the Gambia to the United Nations

(Signed) Lamuel A. Stanislaus
Permanent Representative of Grenada to the United Nations

(Signed) Angel Edmundo Orellana
Permanent Representative of Honduras to the United Nations

(Signed) Yusuf Mcdadlly Juwayeyi
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Malawi to the United Nations

(Signed) Jackeo A. Relang
Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Marshall Islands to the United Nations

(Signed) Vinci Neil Clodumar
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Nauru to the United Nations

(Signed) Mario H. Castellón Duarte
Alternate Permanent Representative
Chargé d’affaires a.i.
Permanent Mission of Nicaragua to the United Nations

(Signed) Dennie M. J. Wilson
Permanent Representative of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines to the United Nations

(Signed) Ibra Deguène Ka
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Senegal to the United Nations

(Signed) Jeremiah Manele
Counsellor
Chargé d’affaires a.i.
Permanent Mission of Solomon Islands to the United Nations

(Signed) Joel M. Nhleko
Counsellor
Chargé d’affaires a.i.
Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Swaziland to the United Nations

 

Annex I to the letter dated 3 August 2000 from the representatives of Burkina Faso, the Gambia, Grenada, Honduras, Malawi, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Nicaragua, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Senegal, Solomon Islands and Swaziland to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General

Explanatory Memorandum

        As Tuvalu of the South Pacific is to be admitted to the United Nations later this year, the Republic of China on Taiwan will then be the only country in the world that remains excluded from the United Nations. Therefore, there is an urgent need to examine this situation from a whole new perspective and redress this mistaken omission. There are many reasons why the Republic of China should have the right to play a role in the United Nations:

1. The Republic of China is a democratic country and its democratically elected Government is the sole legitimate one that can actually represent the interests and wishes of the people of Taiwan in the United Nations.

       The Republic of China and the People’s Republic of China have coexisted on their respective sides of the Taiwan Strait, with neither subject to the other’s rule. Over that past half-century, each side has developed its own political system, social values and foreign relations. Therefore, each of these two sides can speak for and represent only the people actually under its jurisdiction on its respective side of the Taiwan Strait.

2. The exclusion of the Republic of China from the United Nations and its related agencies has created a major and serious obstacle for both the Government and the people of the Republic of China in their pursuit of normal participation in international organizations and activities.

       From 1950 to 1971, the United Nations considered the question of China’s representation. In October 1971, at its twenty-sixth session, the General Assembly adopted resolution 2758 (XXVI), in which it decided that the China seat would be taken by the People’s Republic of China. That resolution, however, failed to address the issue of legitimate representation for the people of Taiwan in the United Nations.

       Worse still, while the representatives of the Government of the Republic of China are excluded from all United Nations activities, the Republic of China’s lack of membership in the United Nations and General Assembly resolution 2758 (XXVI) have too often been used as pretexts to deter or discourage the participation of individuals and non-governmental groups of the Republic in United Nations activities and all activities related to all functions of the Economic and Social Council.

       This unjust exclusion of civil associations and individuals of the Republic of China runs counter to the predominant trend of involving all possible participants in international affairs and the United Nations call for global and comprehensive partnership.

3. The Republic of China, a country with significant achievements, is a constructive and responsible member of the international community.

       The Republic of China has played a positive role in promoting world trade, eradicating poverty and advancing human rights, a fact that merits recognition by Members of the United Nations.

       The Republic of China has a population of 23 million and a democratic system. Above all, it is a peace-loving country, which is able and willing to carry out the obligations contained in the Charter of the United Nations.

       Today the people of the Republic of China on Taiwan enjoy a high degree of freedom and democracy. The Republic held its first direct presidential election in March 1996, the first time in history that the Republic elected its highest leader by popular vote. In March 2000, Mr. Chen Shui-bian of the Democratic Progressive Party was elected in the second direct presidential election, marking the first-ever change of political parties for the presidency of the Republic of China. Since Mr. Chen’s inauguration on 20 May 2000, the people of the Republic have witnessed a peaceful transition of power as a result of a democratic election.

       The Republic of China is one of the most successful examples of economic development in the twentieth century and is now the world’s nineteenth largest economy in terms of GNP, and the fourteenth most important trading country. It is also a major investor in East Asia and possesses the third largest amount of foreign reserves in the world.

       The Republic of China is also a humanitarian-minded country. Over the years it has sent over 10,000 experts to train technicians in countries all over the world, especially the countries of Asia, the South Pacific, Latin America and Africa, to help develop their agricultural, fishery and livestock industries. It also has provided billions of United States dollars in disaster relief throughout the world, including the People’s Republic of China, over the past several years, and has responded to United Nations appeals for emergency relief and rehabilitation assistance to countries suffering from natural disasters and wars.

       Currently, the Republic of China contributes capital to regional development programmes through international financial institutions such as the Asian Development Bank, the Central American Bank for Economic Integration, the Inter-American Development Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

       The Republic of China is fully committed to observing the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and to its integration into the international human rights system spearheaded by the United Nations.

4. The United Nations should take note of the recent conciliatory gestures of the Republic of China towards the People’s Republic of China and play a facilitating role by providing a forum for their reconciliation and rapprochement.

       On 20 June 2000, President Chen called upon the leader of the People’s Republic of China, President Jiang Zemin, to work together to bring about a historic summit like that just held between North and South Korea. He indicated that he would be willing to sit down with Mr. Jiang to pursue cross-strait reconciliation, without specifying any preconditions, format or location. He also urged the leaders of the two sides to use their wisdom and creativity, based on the principles of democracy and parity, to jointly create a favorable environment for the betterment of cross-strait relations. He further voiced the hope that the leaders of the Republic of China and the People’s Republic of China would respect the free choice of the people on both sides and work together to resolve the question of a future “one-China”.

       As an organization dedicated to the preservation and maintenance of world peace, the United Nations should facilitate a reconciliation and peace process between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait. The United Nations can serve as a forum to foster mutual understanding and goodwill between the Republic of China and the People’s Republic of China so that confidence-building measures can be developed in time, thus reducing cross-strait tension.

5. The participation of the Republic of China on Taiwan in the United Nations poses no barrier to the future peaceful resolution of the differences between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait; indeed, it can be conducive to regional peace and security.

       The examples of the former East Germany and West Germany, and now of the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, serve as precedents for parallel representation of divided nations in the United Nations. The exchanges between East Germany and West Germany via the United Nations and other international organizations contributed not only to regional peace and security, but also to their peaceful unification in 1990. The simultaneous admission of two Koreas into the United Nations in 1991 also helped to build mutual trust and confidence between the two, which culminated in the June 2000 summit.

       The strategic position of Taiwan makes it a focal point of the entire Asia and Pacific region. Accordingly, the stability of the Taiwan Strait and its periphery is vital to the maintenance of peace and security for the region in particular and for the world in general. In the absence of an institutionalized crisis-management mechanism that covers the relations across the Taiwan Strait, a role for the Republic of China on Taiwan in the United Nations would bring the area under the peace and security mechanism contained in the United Nations, thus enhancing the maintenance of peace and security in the region. The United Nations should therefore encourage both sides of the Taiwan Strait to work and cooperate in the Organization and its related organizations.

6. The General Assembly should act to ensure that the voice of the 23 million people on Taiwan is heard in the United Nations and its related organizations.

       Tremendous changes have taken place globally in the past two decades. The world is faced with increasingly demanding tasks in eradicating disease and poverty, protecting the environment and endangered species, regulating human migration and population growth, and promoting human rights and dignity. Many of those issues call for global and comprehensive efforts that transcend traditional national boundaries. To be more effective and efficient, these joint efforts require not only broad support and cooperation from national Governments, but also greater involvement and participation from local governments, civil associations and even individuals. As the world organization with the most comprehensive functions, the United Nations system should invite every possible participant of the international community to join the partnership to further the objectives and purposes of the United Nations.,/p>

       At the dawning of the new millennium, people around the world welcome the Israeli-Arab peace talks, the summit between the North and South Koreas and the imminent accession of both the Republic of China and the People’s Republic of China to the World Trade Organization. All these events signify that reconciliation has replaced confrontation as the dominant spirit of the new century and the mainstream value of the international community. It is high time that the United Nations seriously reconsider the appropriateness of continued exclusion of the Republic of China from this most important global forum. With the participation of the Republic of China, the United Nations can live up to its principle of universality, achieve its goal of preventive diplomacy, and facilitate the cross-strait reconciliation and peace process.

 

Annex II to the letter dated 3 August 2000 from the representatives of Burkina Faso, the Gambia, Grenada, Honduras, Malawi, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Nicaragua, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Senegal, Solomon Islands and Swaziland to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General Draft resolution

Draft Resolution

        The General Assembly,

       Considering the fact that the twenty-three million people of the Republic of China on Taiwan are the only remaining people in the world that still do not have actual and legitimate representation in the United Nations,

       Recognizing that since 1949 the Government of the Republic of China has exercised effective control and jurisdiction over the Taiwan area while the Government of the People’s Republic of China has exercised effective control and jurisdiction over the Chinese mainland during the same time period,

       Acknowledging that the Republic of China on Taiwan is a constructive and responsible member of the international community, with a democratic system and a strong, dynamic economy,

       Observing that the strategic location of Taiwan is vital to the peace and security of the East Asian and Pacific regions and the world,

       Understanding that the determination of future relations between the Republic of China on Taiwan and the People’s Republic of China should fully respect the free will of the people on both sides and be implemented in a peaceful way,

       Mindful of the fact that the Republic of China has committed itself to peaceful resolution of differences with the People’s Republic of China and has repeatedly offered friendly and conciliatory gestures towards the leadership of the People’s Republic of China,

       Noting the declaration of the Government of the Republic of China on Taiwan that it accepts without condition the obligations contained in the Charter of the United Nations, that it is able and willing to carry out those obligations, and that it is fully committed to observing the principles and spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,

       Affirming the significance that recognition of and respect for the fundamental rights of the twenty-three million people of the Republic of China on Taiwan would have for upholding the principles and spirit of the Charter of the United Nations,

      Decides

      (a) To respect fully the choice of the people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait with regard to their future relations and to reject any unilateral arrangement or forced resolution of their differences by other than peaceful means;

      (b) To express its concern about cross-strait tension and its possible impact upon regional peace, stability and prosperity, and to encourage the Republic of China on Taiwan and the People’s Republic of China to resume their dialogue and communications on a peaceful basis and equal footing;

      (c) To establish a working group of the General Assembly with the mandate of examining thoroughly the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan so as to ensure that its twenty-three million people participate, with a direct and representative voice, in the United Nations and its related agencies.

 Source: United Nations General Assembly


Official Proposal for the U.N. General Assembly to examine the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan

8 August 2001

 

United Nations 

A/56/193

General Assembly

Distr.: General
8 August 2001

Original: English

Fifty-fifth session

Request for the inclusion of a supplementary item in the agenda of the fifty-sixth session

Need to examine the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan, to ensure that the fundamental right of its twenty-three million people to participate in the work and activities of the United Nations is fully respected

Letter dated 8 August 2001 from the representatives of Belize, Burkina Faso, Chad, Dominica, El Salvador, the Gambia, Nicaragua, Palau, Senegal and Tuvalu to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General

       Upon the instruction of our respective Governments, we have the honour to request, pursuant to rule 14 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, the inclusion in the agenda of the fifty-sixth session of a supplementary item entitled “Need to examine the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan, to ensure that the fundamental right of its twenty-three million people to participate in the work and activities of the United Nations is fully respected”. Pursuant to rule 20 of the rules of procedure of the General Assembly, we attach an explanatory memorandum (see annex I) and a draft resolution (see annex II).

 

(Signed) Stuart W. Leslie
Permanent Representative of Belize to the United Nations

(Signed) Michel  Kafando
Permanent Representative of Burkina Faso to the United Nations

(Signed) Koumtog Laotegguelnodji
Permanent Representative of Chad to the United Nations

(Signed) Simon Paul Richards
Permanent Representative of Dominica to the United Nations

(Signed) Jose Roberto Andino Salazar
Permanent Representative of El Salvador to the United Nations

(Signed) Baboucarr-Blaise Ismaila Jagne
Permanent Representative of the Gambia to the United Nations

(Signed) Eduardo J. Sevilla Somoza
Permanent Representative of Nicaragua to the United Nations

(Signed) Rhinehart Silas
Chargé d’affaires a.i.
Embassy of Palau to the United States of America

(Signed) Ibra Deguene Ka
Permanent Representative of Senegal to the United Nations

(Signed) Enele S. Sopoaga
Permanent Representative of the Tuvalu to the United Nations

 

Annex I to the letter dated 8 August 2001 from the representatives of Belize, Burkina Faso, Chad, Dominica, El Salvador, the Gambia, Nicaragua, Palau, Senegal and Tuvalu to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General

Explanatory Memorandum

        The Republic of China on Taiwan is the only aspiring country that remains excluded from the United Nations after the admission of Tuvalu to the United Nations in 2000. Today, for the following reasons, there is an urgent need to examine this situation and to redress this mistaken omission.

1. The Republic of China is a democratic country and its democratically elected Government is the sole legitimate one that can actually represent the interests and wishes of the people of Taiwan in the United Nations.

       The Republic of China and the People’s Republic of China have coexisted on their respective sides of the Taiwan Strait, with neither subject to the other’s rule for decades. Over that past half-century, each side has developed its own political system, social values and foreign relations. Therefore, each of these two sides can speak for and represent only the people actually under its jurisdiction on its respective side of the Taiwan Strait. Contrary to some claims, the People's Republic of China has never exercised any control over Taiwan since 1949.

2. The exclusion of the Republic of China from the United Nations and its related agencies has created a major and serious obstacle for both the Government and the people of the Republic of China in their pursuit of normal participation in international organizations and activities.

       From 1950 to 1971, the United Nations considered the question of China’s representation. In October 1971, at its twenty-sixth session, the General Assembly adopted resolution 2758 (XXVI), in which it decided that the China seat would be taken by the People’s Republic of China. That resolution, however, failed to address the issue of legitimate representation for the people of Taiwan in the United Nations.

       Worse still, the above-mentioned resolution had often been invoked to deter the participation of individuals and non-governmental groups of Taiwan in United Nations activities and all activities related to the functions of the Economic and Social Council. This unjust exclusion of the Republic of China's civil associations and individuals runs counter to the predominant trend of involving all possible participants in international affairs.

       The principle of universality, enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, demonstrates that the United Nations is open to all States regardless of their size and population; all are welcome to participate and their rights must be guaranteed. In recent years, the United Nations has expanded its functions to include the respect for human rights, advocacy of freedom, realization of democracy, cooperation on economic and social development, humanitarian assistance and peacekeeping operations. However, with all the United Nations achievements in realizing the principle of universality, there is still one country left uncovered by this principle. The involuntary absence of the Republic of China in United Nations activities poses an irony to the United Nations principle of universality.

3. The Republic of China, a country with significant achievements, is a constructive and responsible member of the international community.

      The Republic of China, with a population of 23 million, has played a positive role in entrenching democracy, promoting world trade, eradicating poverty and advancing human rights, a fact that merits recognition by States Members of the United Nations. Above all, it is a peace-loving country, which is able and willing to carry out the obligations contained in the Charter of the United Nations.

           The Republic of China held its first direct presidential election in March 1996, the first time in history that the Republic elected its highest leader by popular vote. In March 2000, Mr. Chen Shui-bian of the Democratic Progressive Party was elected in the second direct presidential election, marking the first-ever change of political parties for presidency of the Republic of China.

           The Republic of China is one of the most successful examples of economic development in the twenty-first century. It is now the world’s seventeenth largest economy in terms of GNP, and the fifteenth most important trading country and the foreign reserves in the world.

           The Republic of China is also a humanitarian-minded country. Over the years it has sent over 10,000 experts to countries in  Asia, the South Pacific, Latin America and Africa, to help develop their agricultural, fishery and aquacultural  industries. Over the past years, it also has provided disaster relief and rehabilitation assistance to countries suffering from natural disasters and the ravages of  wars.

           Taiwan contributes to regional development programmes through international financial institutions such as the Asian Development Bank, the Central American Bank for Economic Integration, the Inter-American Development Bank, the African Development Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

           Taiwan is fully committed to  upholding the international norms of human rights spearheaded by the United Nations. In his inaugural speech in May 2000 and again in his New Year address to the nation in January 2001, President Chen Pointed Rights, the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights and the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action. The Ministry of Justice of the Republic of China has introduced a draft version of the basic law on the protection of human rights, which includes sections devoted to the rights of women, children, labourers, the physically and mentally challenged, senior citizens and aborigines.

4. The United Nations should take note of the recent conciliatory gestures of the Republic of China towards the People’s Republic of China and play a facilitating role by providing a forum for their reconciliation and rapprochement.

           President Chen, in his year-end national address in 2000, appealed to the Government and leaders on the Chinese mainland to overcome the current dispute and deadlock over the Taiwan Strait through tolerance, foresight and wisdom.

           On 1January 2001, the Republic of China implemented "three mini-links" to launch direct trade, postal and shipping links between Taiwan's two offshore island groups of Kinmen and Matsu and mainland China's Xiamen and Fuzhou. Taiwan hopes to foster mutual confidence and gradually build mutual trust between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait through those links.

           With a view to promoting exchanges across the Taiwan Strait, Taiwan has granted permission to journalists from mainland China to be posted for a period of one month in Taiwan so as to facilitate coverage of Taiwan, to Mainland China spouses of Taiwan residents to work in Taiwan, to banks in Taiwan to open representative offices in mainland China, to high-ranking officials to visit mainland China, and to an exchange of information of criminal activities between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait.

           As an organization dedicated to the preservation and maintenance of world peace and security, the United Nations should facilitate  reconciliation and a peace process between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait. The United Nations can serve as a forum to foster mutual understanding and goodwill between the Republic of China and the People’s Republic of China.

5. In the world of increasing globalization, the General Assembly should act to ensure that the voice of the 23 million people on Taiwan is heard in the United Nations and its related organizations.

          Tremendous changes have taken place globally in the past two decades. The world is facing increasingly demanding tasks in eradicating disease and poverty, combating HIV/AIDS, protecting the environment and endangered species, regulating human migration and population growth, and promoting human rights and dignity. Many of those issues call for global and comprehensive efforts that transcend traditional national boundaries. To be more effective and efficient, these joint efforts require not only broader support and cooperation from national actors and individuals. Sa the world organization with the most comprehensive of the international community to join in the partnership to further the objectives and purposes of the United Nations.

           People around the world are confronting new challenges in the new millennium. Reconciliation has replaced confrontation as the dominant spirit of the twenty-first century and the mainstream value of the international community. It is high time that the United Nations seriously reconsider the abnormal situation of continued exclusion of Taiwan from this most important global forum. With the participation of the Republic of China, the United Nations can live up to its principle of universality, achieve its goal of preventive diplomacy and facilitate the cross-strait reconciliation and peace process.

Annex II to the letter dated 8 August 2001 from the representatives of Belize, Burkina Faso, Chad, Dominica, El Salvador, the Gambia, Nicaragua, Palau, Senegal and Tuvalu to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General

Draft Resolution

        The General Assembly,

       Considering, with concern, the fact that the twenty-three million people of the Republic of China on Taiwan are the only remaining people in the world who still do not have actual and legitimate representation in the United Nations,

           Recognizing that since 1949 the Government of the Republic of China has exercised effective control and jurisdiction over the Taiwan area while the Government of the People’s Republic of China has exercised effective control and jurisdiction over the Chinese mainland during the same time period,

           Acknowledging that the Republic of China on Taiwan is a constructive and responsible member of the international community, with a democratic system and a strong, vibrant economy,

           Observing that the strategic location of Taiwan is vital to the peace and security of the East Asian and Pacific regions and that the differences between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait should be resolved peacefully in the interest of international peace and security

           Mindful of the fact that the Republic of China has committed itself to peaceful resolution of differences with the People’s Republic of China and has repeatedly offered friendly and conciliatory gestures towards the leadership of the People’s Republic of China,

           Noting the declaration of the Government of the Republic of China on Taiwan that it accepts without condition the obligations contained in the Charter of the United Nations, that it is able and willing to carry out those obligations, and that it is fully committed to observing the principles and spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,

           Stressing the significance that recognition of and respect for the fundamental rights of the twenty-three million people of the Republic of China on Taiwan would have for upholding the principles and spirit of the Charter of the United Nations,

           Decides:

           (a)       To establish a working group of the General Assembly with the mandate of examining thoroughly the exceptional international situation pertaining to the Republic of China on Taiwan with a view to ensuring that its twenty-three million people participate in the United Nations and its related agencies and thereby contribute actively to the international community;

           (b)       To invite the representatives of the Republic of China to take part in the work of the working group;

           (c)       To express its concern about cross-strait tension and its possible impact upon regional peace, stability and prosperity, and to encourage the Republic of China on Taiwan and the People's of China to resume dialogue and communications on the basis of equal footing and peaceful solution;

           (d)       To call for a peaceful resolution of differences between the Republic of China and the People's Republic of China, which bears heavily on the peace and security of Asia and the Pacific, and to encourage the international community to pay close attention to the situation in that region.

 Source: United Nations General Assembly