(TibetanReview.net, Jan02, 2015) – The Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission (MTAC) of the government of Taiwan was severely reprimanded for failing to provide any report on alleged Chinese human rights violations in Tibet despite repeated legislative committee resolutions and for other infractions on Dec 31, reported taipeitimes.com Jan 1. The reprimand took place during the Legislative Yuan’s Internal Administration Committee meeting.
The report said the committee, presided over by Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Wu Yu-sheng, slashed the MTAC’s NT$125 million (US$3.95 million) budget for this year by NT$8.4 million, including allotments for a rare earth metal investigation in Inner Mongolia, and for exchanges between Taiwan, Mongolian and Tibetan groups overseas.
The report also said another NT$2 million of the MTAC’s Tibetan Affairs Office was frozen, as proposed by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Chen Chi-mai, until a report on human rights violations in Tibet that was demanded of the MTAC by the committee as early as the end of 2013 was provided. Chen has said that although the resolution requesting the quarterly reports of rights violations in Tibet was made very long ago, “no such report has so far been seen from the commission.”
Chen has also noted that while the MTAC had spent NT$1.15 million to hold a cross-strait conference on ‘ethnic groups issues and policies’ in 2013 — to which Chinese officials and academics were invited — “the commission had spent only NT$40,000 for a conference on self-immolation protests by Tibetans.”
Until Taiwan became a democracy under Lee Teng-hui in the early 1990s, MTAC was instrumental in funding disgruntled groups within the exile Tibetan community and was greatly despised by the mainstream exile Tibetan people and officialdom. Its failure to provide reports on the rights situation in Chinese ruled Tibet and to reach out to exile officials and groups means that it still has not adapted to the new situation in democratic Taiwan’s relations vis-à-vis China and the exile Tibetans.