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China warns Taiwan after landslide election victory

19Taiwan should abandon its ‘hallucinations’ about pushing for independence as any moves towards it would be a ‘poison’.

Chinese state-run media said after a landslide victory for the island’s independence-leaning opposition, reports Al Jazeera.

The comment comes after Taiwan elected Tsai Ing-wen as its first female president, handing her pro-independence party its first majority in the national legislature and rejecting the China-friendly party that has led the self-governing island for eight years.

In a statement issued after Tsai’s win, the Chinese Cabinet’s body for handling Taiwan affairs reaffirmed its opposition to Taiwan independence, but said it would work to maintain peace and stability between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait.

‘Our will is as strong as a rock, our attitude unswerving on the principal matter of safeguarding national sovereignty and territorial integrity,’ the Taiwan Affairs Office said.

Voters concerned that Taiwan’s economy is under threat from China and broadly opposed to Beijing’s demands for political unification resoundingly chose Tsai over the Nationalists’ Eric Chu, a late replacement for his party’s original candidate who was seen as alienating voters.

Tsai said her victory was a further show of Taiwan’s ingrained democracy and its people wish for a government ‘steadfast in protecting this nation’s sovereignty’.

She too pledged to maintain the status quo with China. She said both sides have a responsibility to find a mutually acceptable means of interacting, while adding that Taiwan’s international space must be respected.

She said she would correct past policy mistakes, but warned that ‘the challenges that Taiwan faces will not disappear in one day’.

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