MAC slams Hong Kong for ‘unfriendly’ attitude

By Stephen Che The China Post

The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said yesterday that Hong Kong authorities have shown that they are unfriendly to Taiwan after refusing entry to a MAC official on Friday. MAC official Chang Chih-yu was accompanying a group of Taiwan reporters on their way to cover the election of Hong Kong’s chief executive when he was barred from entering the special administrative region by immigration authorities. Hong Kong immigration blocked Chang on the grounds that Chang’s work visa had expired last July, but Chang should have been allowed in with his visitor’s visa which is effective until this May, a MAC statement read. MAC said that Hong Kong immigration authorities had agreed to allow Chang’s entry before the trip, albeit under the condition that Chang may not participate in certain parts of the group’s itinerary. MAC said that Hong Kong authorities had already refused to issue a visa for MAC official Huang Chien-liang who had originally planned to accompany the group. “The Hong Kong government’s negative and conservative actions have been the main reason why relations between Taiwan and Hong Kong have not been elevated,” according to the MAC statement. MAC said that close cooperation between Taiwan and Hong Kong authorities are needed as exchanges between people of the two regions are frequent.

“MAC calls on Donald Tsang to seize the historic opportunity to proactively and practically handle the Hong Kong-Taiwan relationship to let Hong Kong serve more as a bridge in the cross-strait relationship,” MAC said.