Taipei, 18 September 1998
On 18 September 1998, a new political alliance was set up in
Taiwan by a group of pro-Taiwan independence politicians. The group
was named New Nation Alliance and is dedicated to promote
political, social and cultural reforms. The alliance issued a
manifesto explaining its main purpose -- promoting the establishment
of a "new nation, new society and new culture."
Six of the politicians are currently independent members of the
Legislative Yuan. They left the DPP two years ago due to the
wishy-washy policies of former chairman Hsu hsin-liang.
The manifesto said all of its members share the same political
concepts and ideals. "We are willing to serve as woodpeckers
and antiseptics in a new era and to dedicate ourselves to pushing
for the birth of a new, free and democratic Taiwan Republic,"
The Alliance will field 15 candidates for the upcoming December
5th elections for the Legislative Yuan and Taipei and Kaohsiung city
councils. Under current regulations, it will be given two at-large
seats in the legislature if its legislative candidates receive at
least five percent of the vote.
Addressing the ceremony, Chairman Lin Yi-hsiung of the main
opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said the formation of
the new alliance indicates that Taiwan has become a mature
pluralistic society. "I think there will be ample room for the
DPP and the New Nation Alliance to cooperate in pursuing the
creation of a new nation," Lin noted.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Premier Vincent Siew said
the formation of the Alliance signifies the value of democracy and
will make the Legislative Yuan's political spectrum even more
diversified. "Even though my political concepts differ from
those of the Alliance, I believe that we are both pursuing the
country's well-being," the premier said.
A leading member of the Alliance is Legislator Chen Yung-hsing,
from Hualien County, who played an important role in the late 1980s
in calling for a new interest in, and commemoration of, the February
28th Incident of 1947. Up until that time, it had been
a taboo to speak and write about this Taiwanese equivalent of the
Chen Yung-hsing said the year-end elections will offer a new
opportunity for the adjustment of Taiwan's political map. "In
order to ensure the survival of those with clean images and lofty
political ideals in the legislature and the city councils of Taipei
and Kaohsiung, we have decided to form this new alliance to promote
our cause," he noted.
Chen said the alliance will maintain cooperative ties with the
pro-independence DPP and the Taiwan Independence Party. "We'll
cooperate closely in the year-end elections in the hope that the
opposition camp will be able to control more than half the seats in