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The Forum > Article Comments > Taiwan's place in the international space > Comments

Taiwan's place in the international space : Comments

By Ming Hwa Ting, published 4/1/2010

Climate change provides Taiwan, an inconvenient island, with a convenient cause.

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The simple fact of the matter is that neither Taiwan nor the “Rep. of China” on Taiwan is a country. The often heard statement that the Taiwan problem is an outgrowth of the Chinese Civil War of the late 1940s is incorrect. You have to go back to the events of WWII in order to understand Taiwan's international legal position.

The Chinese Nationalists were sent to "administer" Taiwan in Oct. 1945, but there was no transfer of sovereignty. (The notion that there was a “Taiwan Retrocession Day” on Oct. 25, 1945, is simply Chinese propaganda, none of the Allies agreed to such an “interpretation.”) Under international law, the military occupation of Taiwan began with the surrender of Japanese troops. However, the “occupying power” is the conqueror, and that is the United States of America, not the ROC. (All military attacks against Taiwan in the WWII period were conducted by US military forces. The ROC did not participate.) Then the ROC central government fled to occupied Taiwan in Dec. 1949 to become a government in exile. In the post-war peace treaty, the sovereignty of Taiwan was not awarded to the ROC. Hence, today Taiwan simply remains as occupied territory. There is a principal – agent relationship between the United States and the ROC for the military occupation of Taiwan, which has continued up to the present day.

Many people complain about the international “One China Policy,” but that policy is essentially correct. The People’s Republic of China is the sole legitimate government of China. The Republic of China is merely a government in exile, and has no international legitimacy as either the (1) government of mainland China, or (2) the government of Taiwan. Importantly, there are no international legal documents which can prove that the territorial sovereignty of Taiwan has ever been transferred to China. See relevant references at and see a complete explanation on my website at
Posted by Roger-usa, Monday, 4 January 2010 7:36:46 PM
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