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Page last updated at 14:29 GMT, Thursday, 29 May 2008 15:29 UK

Press hails China-Taiwan talks

President Hu Jintao (L) and Wu Poh-hsiung (R), Chairman of Taiwan"s Kuomintang (KMT)
The visit is the first by a Taiwanese leader since 1949

The agreement between China and Taiwan to restart formal talks on strengthening ties after almost a decade is broadly welcomed by the press.

Newspapers and commentators feel the discussions planned in Beijing next month will lay the foundations for a more stable relationship.

However, a Hong Kong commentator says there are still some doubts about long-term progress, especially on sovereignty, while one Taiwanese columnist urges that the island's politicians and business people to be wary.

EDITORIAL IN BEIJING'S CHINA DAILY

There's every reason to hope for the best of times in cross-Straits relations after yesterday's meeting... There should be no doubt about the political determination of both sides to promote cross-Straits relations towards a peaceful and stable path, but it takes wisdom and time to realise that goal... The proposals, which are politically far-sighted, have also fully shown Beijing's sincerity in addressing Taiwan compatriots' concerns.

INTERNATIONAL HERALD LEADER CARRIED BY XINHUA NEWS AGENCY

Wu Po-hsiung's mainland visit this time is indeed a 'journey of responsibility'. It is the first time a Kuomintang (KMT) chairman has taken the initiative to take concrete action to explore interaction between the two parties on both sides of the strait... Leaders of both the Communist Party and the KMT sat side by side as heads of the ruling party for the first time... Wu's visit ... should be an ideological exploration and recognition. The sooner the progress of recognition is completed, the more stable [Taiwan's] cross-strait policy will become without giving ideas like Taiwanese independence the opportunity to flourish.

EDITORIAL IN TAIWAN'S UNITED DAILY

As anticipated... weekend chartered flights and the passage of mainland tourists to Taiwan won Hu Jintao's approval. These are Hu's gifts to Ma Ying-jeou's government to congratulate Ma on his inauguration as president. Their significance lies not merely in the implementation of a few policies but also in the firm foundation laid in amicable relations between Taiwan and China.

LI XIAN-ZHI IN HONG KONG'S MING PAO DAILY NEWS

In consideration of Ma Ying-jeou's proposed 'diplomatic ceasefire', Beijing has already come up with a relatively comprehensive view that China will not take the initiative to take away the few countries with which Taiwan has diplomatic ties...

NG TZE-WEI IN HONG KONG'S SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

Leaders on both sides of the Taiwan Strait yesterday held their first summit in more than 60 years, scoring a minor breakthrough on Taiwan's future participation in international bodies... Mr Wu confirmed that future talks... would be based on the principle of "seeking common ground and accepting differences"... In their public speeches, both Mr Hu and Mr Wu put their differences behind them.

LAWRENCE CHUNG IN HONG KONG'S SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

A meeting of top-level leaders in Beijing yesterday gave a dramatic boost to long-soured relations across the Taiwan Strait, but some analysts remained doubtful that the two sides could resolve their political differences - especially over sovereignty... Pundits said that while the two sides were expected to have a friendly engagement in the short-term, it was inevitable that they would eventually touch on thorny political issues.

PAUL LIN IN TAIPEI'S TAIPEI TIMES

Beijing's invitation to KMT Chairman Wu Poh-hsiung to visit China ... tells the Taiwanese that the KMT and the CCP are 'equal' but that the governments of the People's Republic of China and the Republic of China on Taiwan are not... The purpose of these measures is to corrode Taiwan's sovereignty and diminish the status of the Taiwanese government... Taiwan's politicians and business people operating in China should be on their guard.

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.


SEE ALSO
China and Taiwan to restart talks
29 May 08 |  Asia-Pacific
Taiwan says China talks to resume
23 May 08 |  Asia-Pacific
China looks to closer Taiwan ties
22 May 08 |  Asia-Pacific
Historic China-Taiwan talks held
12 Apr 08 |  Asia-Pacific
Taiwanese hope of new China chapter
23 Mar 08 |  Asia-Pacific

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