China fails in bid to force LCI name change on Taiwan

TAIPEI (CNA) – Beijing’s attempt to force a change in Taiwan’s designation at Lions Clubs International (LCI) has failed after members from around the world at a recent meeting decided to shelve the Chinese proposal, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said yesterday.

At a meeting of LCI’s international board of directors held in Reykjavik, Iceland Saturday, China proposed that Taiwan’s designation in the organization should be changed from “MD300 Taiwan” to “MD300 China Taiwan,” MOFA said, citing a report from the Washington-based Chinese-language Epoch Times.

LCI is one of the largest and most active voluntary institutions in the world.

According to MOFA spokesman Andrew Lee (李憲章), on learning of China’s proposal, MOFA immediately contacted MD300 Taiwan, Lions Clubs International and asked it to do its utmost at the meeting to safeguard Taiwan’s designation in the nongovernmental organization.

Thanks to the efforts of Taiwan’s Lions members and their counterparts around the world, it was decided that China’s proposal should be put on hold, he said, thanking LCI members for their support of Taiwan based on the principles of equal participation and dignity.

MOFA has issued a public protest over China’s actions and will keep a close watch on follow-up developments, Lee said.

By Ku Chuan and Flor Wang