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China's Taiwan policy chief to make first-ever visit to island, in further sign of warming ties

Published on Jun 12, 2014 10:09 PM

BEIJING (AFP) - The head of China's Taiwan Affairs Office is to make his first-ever visit to the island, Taiwanese officials announced on Thursday, in a further sign of warming ties between the mainland and its former bitter rival.

Mr Zhang Zhijun, director of China's State Council Taiwan Affairs Office, will visit Taiwan in late June to meet his Taiwanese counterpart Wang Yu-chi, the island's China policy decision-making body said.

"The Mainland Affairs Council hopes the visit will help facilitate official interaction between the two sides and enable the mainland authorities to better understand how Taiwan people look at the cross-strait relationship," council spokesman Wu Mei-hung said.

Mr Zhang will not visit Taipei on the landmark four-day visit, reflecting a trip to China by Taiwan's Mr Wang in February, who avoided visiting the capital because of political sensitivities.

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