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Taiwan debates barring holders of new China passports

Published on Dec 13, 2012 1:42 PM
A page from a Chinese passport displays a Chinese map which includes an area in the South China Sea inside a line of dashes representing maritime territory claimed by China, in Kunming, Yunnan province, in a photo taken on Nov 23, 2012. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

TAIPEI (AFP) - Taiwan will discuss whether to deny entry to holders of new Chinese passports with maps showing two of the island's most famous spots as part of Chinese territory, a top official said on Thursday.

Wang Yu-chi, chairman of the Mainland Affairs Council which is the top China policy-making body, told parliament that relevant government units will review the matter within a week.

Opposition lawmakers have demanded the government bar Chinese visitors who use the new computer-chipped passports bearing a map that covers Sun Moon Lake and Cingshui Cliff, both popular tourist destinations in Taiwan.

Taiwan has protested the controversial new passports, with President Ma Ying-jeou calling on China not to "unilaterally damage the status quo of the hard-fought stability" between the two sides.

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