Date: January 6, 2016

China will “firmly oppose” North Korea’s nuclear tests

China has expressed firm opposition to North Korea’s nuclear test, but their foreign affairs spokesperson wasn’t clear about whether China would be open to sanctions or any other disciplinary actions.

The nuclear test was the lead story on the Shanghai Morning Post on January 7, 2016, under the headline, “Firmly Oppose North Korea Again Testing Nuclear.” Shanghai Morning Post is published by the Liberation Daily Newspaper Group, a government-connected company that publishes Liberation Daily, the official daily newspaper of the Shanghai Committee of Communist Party of China.

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According to the text of the article, the Foreign Ministry expressed anger at North Korea’s continual stifling of international and Chinese efforts to stop North Korea from developing nuclear weapons, but they didn’t state what–if any–reprisals North Korea would face:

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B+D Exclusive Interview: Prof. Huang Min-hua on Taiwanese ethnic divides

On January 16, Taiwanese voters go to the polls to elect their next president. After eight years of Ma Ying-jeou’s Kuomintang rule, which was marked by the Sunflower Movement protests against closer ties with China, pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party candidate Tsai Ing-wen is leading by a comfortable margin in the polls against KMT nominee Eric Chu. On November 7, 2015, Ma met with Chinese president Xi Jinping, the first time the leaders of the two sides had met since the end of the Chinese civil war. This journalist spoke with National Taiwan University associate professor of Political Science Huang Min-hua on November 11 about Taiwanese politics as it relates to the independence movement and ethnolinguistic identities.

Huang has researched and taught politics and data analysis in both Taiwan and the United States, including as a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Center for East Asian Policy Studies, before joining National Taiwan University as an associate professor in 2013. His recent journal articles and book chapters focus extensively on political legitimacy and views of China in Asia.

When it comes to the Ma-Xi meeting, would one’s view on Taiwanese independence have a big influence on whether they support it or not?

That’s one perspective from which you can approach this issue, but I think there are more complicated issues underneath. It’s just like a cueing effect when Ma and Xi shook hands. It signified a certain message for unification. Then a lot of people, if they are pro-independence, or at least if they don’t want the process or cross-strait relations moving so close, so fast, they are irritated by this kind of event.

On the other hand, you don’t see many protest events happening outdoors, at the Presidential Palace, or even in Singapore. Last time, in 1993, the opposition party, the DPP, organized a team to protest outside the Wang-Koo summit. But this time you only see a couple of people [protesting in Singapore]: one from the Taiwan Solidarity Union, who got arrested and deported back to Taiwan. The opposition party [the DPP] did not actually initiate organized, large-scale protests against Ma.

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Primary thoughts on North Korean Nuclear test

Happy new year, hope your start to the new year was better than mine! I have been really busy with some professional and some personal issues, but hey, life goes on, and I am happy to welcome you readers back on what’s hopefully to be a smashing new year.

To start with a bang, so to speak…here’s  my primary thought on North Korean nuclear test.

Listen, comment and share! Cheers.

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