Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The War Over the CSSTA Enters a New Phase

In an eerily familiar move in the legislature, the KMT may have rekindled the crisis over a controversial services pact with China 

As the members of the Sunflower Movement exited the Legislative Yuan on April 10 after nearly three weeks of occupation, a number of people among the tens of thousands who’d assembled to give them a triumphal welcome must have wondered just exactly what it was that the occupiers had accomplished. While the jury is still out on the extent of their success, recent developments make it clear that the battle is far from over. In fact, it may be about to get a lot nastier. 

Those who regarded the Sunflowers’ exit with optimism did so largely because of the awakening that the extraordinary occupation had generated within society, as well as the concession that the movement had extracted from Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) — and ostensibly the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) — on the Cross-Strait Services Trade Agreement (CSSTA). The activists’ decision to vacate the legislative chambers stemmed from Wang’s promise, on April 6, that he would not allow a legislative review of the controversial pact with China before an oversight mechanism on cross-strait deals had been implemented, thus meeting one of the activists’ key demands. 

My article, published today on Thinking Taiwan, continues here. (Photo by the author)

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