Taiwan Boycotts Shanghai Forum And Withdraws Its Delegation

The fist day of the informal summit of the Asian-Pacific Economic Commonwealth in Shanghai, which is to be launched today, witnessed a diplomatic incident between China and Taiwan, which China considers its "rebellious province." Having declared a boycott to the APEC forum, all members of the Taiwan delegation left Shanghai. The Taiwanese departure was prompted by a quarrel between Chinese and Taiwanese ministers, which occurred on October 18. The Chinese Foreign Minister, who chaired the APEC ministers' press conference, refused to give the floor to the Taiwanese Economy Minister. This incident was followed by a series of emotionally-coloured Taiwanese statements, which accused Beijing of violating diplomatic regulations and rules. Another cause of the scandal is that Beijing has refused to send an invitation to the APEC forum to the Taiwanese Vice-Premier who was due to participate in the summit of the APEC leaders. Since 1992, when Taiwan joined the APEC, Taipei has always taken into consideration Beijing's position and has never sent to the APEC forums any of its officials ranking higher than a minister.

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