Taiwan accused Chinese authorities of “illegally abducting” eight of its citizens facing deportation from Kenya, providing a potential diplomatic test for the island’s incoming president, Tsai Ing-wen.
Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Monday that mainland Chinese officials took “uncivilized action” and obstructed a Kenyan High Court order allowing the Taiwanese to stay in the African nation. The Chinese officials then forced them onto a China Southern Airlines Co. flight bound for the mainland, the foreign ministry in Taipei said in statement.
China’s foreign ministry and Taiwan Affairs Office didn’t immediately respond to faxed requests for comment.
The two sides have been separately governed since 1949, when China’s Nationalist government fled to Taiwan in a civil war against the Communists. The island elected Tsai of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party as president in January, following eight years of rapprochement with China under Nationalist President Ma Ying-jeou.
Tsai, who takes office May 20, has so far declined to accept China’s bottom line for continued talks, the so-called one-China principle. Under it, both sides agree they’re part of one China, even if they disagree on what that means.
“There are some still here — another batch will be deported tomorrow,” Njoka said. Asked about Taiwan’s criticism of China, he said, “we don’t want to get involved.”