The Chinese mainland said Tuesday that Taiwan leader Chen Shui-bian played with words to cheat the Taiwan people and the world, but his intention to seek "Taiwan independence" is known to all.
"Such tricks of Chen Shui-bian have already been seen through by the world. He will only end up hurting himself in this farce," says a statement jointly issued by the Taiwan Work Office of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council.
The statement was authorized by superior authorities in China's leadership.
Chen declared Monday afternoon that the National Unification Council would "cease to function" and that the National Unification Guidelines would "cease to apply."
Chen's declaration is seen by the Chinese mainland as a dangerous move toward Taiwan's de jure independence, exacerbating the perennial tension across the Taiwan Strait.
At the same time, strong denunciations have been heard from opposition parties in Taiwan.
"While there are very many economic problems to address, (Chen) sparked a battle of pursuing independence or unification. That's not good for the welfare of the people," said Kuomintang Chairman Ma Ying-jeou in Taiwan.
A news release issued by the People First Party in Taiwan said that Chen's move sabotages the cross-Straits relations status quo and runs counter to the mainstream public wishes for economic prosperity, stability and peace in the Taiwan Strait.
An alliance formed by the Kuomintang, the People First Party, Non-Partisan Solidarity Union and other parties have decided to jointly bring impeachment motions against Chen.
On May 20, 2000, Chen promised not to declare Taiwan independence, incorporate the two states idea into the constitution, change Taiwan's name, hold a referendum on independence, or to abolish the National Unification Council or the National Unification Guidelines.
Eight democratic parties and the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce in the mainland accused Chen of being "a troublemaker and destroyer of peace and stability in the Taiwan Straits" for the breach his commitment not to seek "de jure independence".
"Regardless of whether it is called "abolishing" or "ceasing the operation", it seriously sabotages cross-Strait relations and has the potential of bringing disaster to people in the mainland and Taiwan," said a statement by the nine organs.
In the international community, Chen's secessionist activity have also caused concern.
The United States, which pursues a policy of strategic ambiguity in cross-Strait relations in which it neither supports formal Taiwanese independence nor a forcible Chinese takeover of the island, cautioned Taiwan against taking destabilizing unilateral actions.
A spokesman from Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs expressed regret Monday at Taiwan's move on the NUC and the National Unification Guidelines, saying "it will raise concerns about Taiwan's intentions and it is not conducive to the maintenance of stable cross-strait relations."
The NUC was established in 1990 by Taiwan authorities headed by Lee Teng-hui. Fourteen meetings had been held since its establishment, but no NUC meetings had been held since Chen Shui-bian became Taiwan leader.
The "National Unification Guidelines" were issued in 1991, saying both the mainland and Taiwan are under the sovereignty of China and promoting the country's reunification should be the common task of all Chinese. The guidelines also outlined a three-phase goal for the realization of China's reunification.