Taiwan's DPP leader vows to work for progressive coalition

Taiwan's DPP leader vows to work for progressive coalition

Opposition leader Tsai Ing-wen has said her party would co-operate with any "progressive" forces, supporting their candidates in next year's legislative elections if it is a necessary move for taking control of parliament.

Tsai said the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is open-minded enough to give up any electoral districts, making way for allied candidates who stand chances of winning.

It is the DPP's principle and responsibility to support the strongest opposition candidates in a bid to oust the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) and let the camp of reformers become the majority in parliament, said the party chief.

"As long as they belong to the progressive camp, it doesn't matter whether they are DPP members or not," said Tsai Friday while speaking to supporters in New York City. "As long as they can earn one more seat for the progressive forces, we can sit down and talk."

The DPP's nomination strategies for the legislative elections have been criticised by some allies who claim it is not giving enough room for other opposition forces.

Each electoral district will be represented by only one seat in the Legislature, which means the chance of minor opposition camps may rely on the DPP not fielding candidates in the districts they are competing in.

A split of support between the DPP and its allies in an electoral district could result in failure for both.

Tsai said the DPP will not rule out any form of co-operation with other opposition forces.

She maintained that the DPP even withdrew its candidate from last November's Taipei mayoral election in support of independent candidate Ko Wen-je. Ko went on to win the race.

"As long as it is beneficial to Taiwan, there is nothing that the DPP will not be ready to give up," she said.

The DPP is seeking further victory in the presidential and legislatives elections taking place in early 2016, after dealing a heavy blow to the KMT in the November local elections.

Tsai, who is representing the DPP in next year's presidential race, stands a good chance of becoming the first-ever woman president in Taiwan.

Tsai is currently on a 12-day six-city visit in the United States.

Following her visit to Washington, D.C. earlier last week, Tsai went on to New York City, where she gave a talk to a rally of about 1,000 Taiwanese supporters on Friday.

During her talk, she also outlined her cultural policies. She said she would put prioritize the nation's cultural resources for training talent.

She said she would turn Taiwan into a "magnet" attracting international talent, and she would build a new model of economic development for Taiwan based on creativity and knowledge.

Meanwhile, the New York Times cited reports as suggesting that it was an unusual move for the US government to host a meeting with Tsai at the Department of State headquarters.

The reports said Tsai wanted to convince the US government that she is capable of handling cross-strait relations.

The US has so far refused to disclose whether Tsai met with Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken, and which US officials she had met with.

The US Department of State has maintained that the US government's meeting with Tsai was in line with Washington's "one China policy" and did not signal any changes to its Taiwan policy.

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