Let’s hear it for tiny Taiwan.
And let’s hope the popular 15-year-old Swedish climate actvist Greta Thunberg will start speaking up for Taiwan, too. She has the chops, she has the voice, she has the guts. She has stood up to the world’s leaders already. Let’s hope she will find it within herself next year to stand up for Taiwan, too.
Here’s the story: As the current time, due to the glaringly arrogant stance and geo-political pressure from the Chinese Communist Party in Beijing, there is one tiny democratic country — Taiwan — that has been excluded in participating at the annual international climate change conferences each year, no matter what country the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change takes place in. This year it was Poland. Next year, in November, COP 25 will take place in Chile, with a pre-conference meeting in Costa Rica. The Chile conference will be held from November 11-22, 2019.
With headlines like “Teenage activist inspires school strikes to protest climate change after telling leaders they are ‘not mature enough’” describing the way the brave Greta has spoken out about the need to change the way politicians the world over have been immaturely dealing with climate change issues, wouldn’t be a shock to see Greta stand in front of microphone soon, next year, and speak directly to Chinese leader Xi Jiping and ask him to stop being so ”immature” and to allow Taiwan to join the international climate talks next year in Chile. (If not as a direct participant, then at least as an offiical observer, with proper press passes given out to working journalists from Taiwan covering the event in South America.)
Since Taiwan is not a member of the U.N., it has has been blocked by communist China from engaging in the many organizations and institutions of the U.N., including participation in meetings related to the annual COP climate conferences. In 2018, due to China’s strongarm pressure, Taiwan was not allowed to take part in the COP24 in Poland, although a Taiwanese delegation of more than 60 representatives from different government agencies did fly to Poland to meet with participants on the ”sidelines” of the conference.
As a result, the Taiwanese delegation was able to hold 38 bi-lateral meetings with representatives from its diplomatic allies and Taiwan-friendly nations, and also met with Tuvalu’s prime minister, environmental ministers and parliamentarians from several countries. The group also highlighted Taiwan’s carbon reduction efforts in the energy, manufacturing, transportation, real estate, agricultural and environmental sectors, according to sources in Taipei.
During the conference, Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs placed billboard advertisements on buses and trams bearing the words “Combating climate change, Taiwan can help” to showcase Taiwan’s ”diplomatic soft power,” the sources said.
The COP24 in Poland, which attracted 18,000 ”official” delegates from around the world, concluded with the adoption of a deadline for hashing out the Paris Agreement “rule book,” the operating manual needed for when the global deal comes into force in 2020. But Taiwan was not allowed to directly participate. So what can Greta do?
Surely, Miss Thunberg could use her international speaking platform to say to China’s leader: “Xi Jiping, stop being so immature. Tear down your walls of prejudice and bias. Let Taiwan in for the next round of COP talks in 2019.”
Greta could say, for all the world to hear: “I am truly flabbergasted and annoyed by the UN’s action of stopping Taiwan from not even having observer status, due to pressure from China. Leaders of countries around the world should say to China: enough is enough. What the PRC are doing is unacceptable. Once upon a time communism was the common enemy because many of us lived in democratic countries such as Sweden. Now because of economic concerns, leaders of the world and the U.N. are prepared to ”sleep with the devil” if necessary. They seem to forget that the institution that was set up to protect and put things in place to prevent a third world war is not doing the work it was destined to do. China is a country which fails to abide by human rights values, even when it comes to the persecution of Muslim and Christian religious groups.”
Greta Thunberg is the little girl that could. She has become an international superstar, and more power to her.
Let’s hope she speaks up soon — loud and clear — for Taiwan’s right to participate in next year’s climate conference in Chile, COP 25.
Don’t cop out, Greta. Speak up for Taiwan. If anyone can do it, you can.