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Association established to serve cross-Strait couples

(Xinhua)

16:53, August 29, 2012

BEIJING, Aug. 28 (Xinhua) -- An association has been established to handle marriage and family affairs of couples from the Chinese mainland and Taiwan.

Cross-Strait couples have been contributing to the development of the relationship between the mainland and Taiwan, and the association should work to better serve these couples and protect their legitimate rights and interests, Wang Yi, director of the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, said at the inauguration ceremony and the first session of the association here Tuesday.

Official statistics show that more than 320,000 cross-Strait couples have come into being since non-governmental exchanges between the two sides of the Strait were restored in 1987, and the number has consistently climbed by more than 10,000 couples annually.

The association, working under the guidance of both the office and the Ministry of Civil Affairs, will make efforts in promoting communication and exchanges between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait, said Civil Affairs Minister Li Liguo.

Vice Minister of Civil Affairs Dou Yupei was elected president of the association.

In addition to acting as a service platform for cross-Strait couples, the association will also serve as a medium for cross-Strait exchanges and cooperation in this field and as an advisory body for relevant authorities, Dou said.

Cross-Strait couples now need a wide spectrum of social services such as employment, social security, medical care, education and child bearing and raising, Dou said.

Moreover, cross-Strait marriage and family affairs also involve the children and relatives of these couples, he said.

Dou said the association will publish a consultation hotline and help resolve possible complaints through mediation or by referring the problems to relevant government authorities.

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