Hsu Hsin-liang

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Hsu Hsin-liang
許信良
President Direct Election Movement Hsin-liang Hsu.jpg
Chairperson of the DPP
In office
18 July 1996 – 18 July 1998
Preceded by Shih Ming-teh
Succeeded by Lin Yi-hsiung
In office
20 January 1992 – 4 December 1993
Preceded by Huang Shin-chieh
Succeeded by Shih Ming-teh
Magistrate of Taoyuan
In office
20 December 1977 – 1 July 1979
Preceded by Wu Po-hsiung
Weng Chien (acting)
Succeeded by Yeh Kuo-kuang (acting)
Hsu Hung-chih
Personal details
Born 27 May 1941 (1941-05-27) (age 72)
Jhongli, Taoyuan, Taiwan, Empire of Japan
Nationality  Republic of China
Political party Democratic Progressive Party
Alma mater National Chengchi University
University of Edinburgh
Occupation Politician

Hsu Hsin-liang (traditional Chinese: 許信良; simplified Chinese: 许信良; pinyin: Xǔ Xìnliáng; born 27 May 1941 in Taoyuan County, Taiwan, Empire of Japan) is a Taiwanese politician, formerly Chairman of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). He was a supporter of the Pan-Blue Coalition from 2000 to 2008 but then supported the DPP in the 2008 presidential election.

Early life[edit]

Hsu attended now the Hsinchu Senior High School and received his bachelor's degree in Political Science from the National Chengchi University in 1967 and his KMT-sponsored master's degree from the University of Edinburgh in 1969.

Political career[edit]

Hsu began his political career in the Kuomintang as a member of the Taiwan Provincial Assembly from 1973 to 1977. He was expelled from Kuomintang but broke ranks in 1977 when he ran and won as an independent in the election for Magistrate of Taoyuan County.

Deeply involved in the Kaohsiung Incident, during which opposition politicians held a demonstration commemorating Human Rights Day,[1] Hsu was discharged and impeached by the legislative and forced into exile in the United States in 1979.

In 1986, after DPP founded, he tried to return to Taiwan but was turned back upon arriving at the Chiang Kai-shek International Airport. Three years later he was arrested while slipping into Taiwan aboard a mainland Chinese fishing boat and was jailed for sedition until Lee Teng-hui president declared to have being pardoned in 1990.

He later joined the DPP and served as its Chairman twice, from 1991 to 1993 and 1996 to 1998. He attempted to transform the party from a radical pro-Taiwan independence party to a more moderate and electable political group that no longer supported immediate independence. Having failed twice in gaining DPP support for his presidential bid, first in 1996 when he lost the party primary to Peng Ming-Min and second in 1999 when the party threw its support behind the widely popular former mayor of Taipei City, Chen Shui-Bian, Hsu decided to withdraw from the DPP in 1999.

After expelled from the party, Hsu ran in the 2000 presidential election as an independent with New Party legislator Chu Hui-liang as his running mate. During the campaign, he promoted unification based on 'one country, two systems'. After the election Hsu became more critical of the Chen Shui-bian government and its various policies. Hsu believes that maintaining a good relationship with the People's Republic of China is vital for Taiwan's survival and growth, and there is no hurry to negotiate with mainland on political issues at the present. Instead, establishing a closer economic relationship across the strait will help Taiwan's economy.

Hsu publicly supported Lien Chen and James Soong in the 2004 presidential election. In March 2004, Hsu and a dozen other prominent politicians involved in the Tangwai movement published The Joint Declaration of the Tang Wai participants(黨外人士聯合聲明, the joint declaration of the participants outside of the political party movement), in which they reprimanded Chen Shui-bian of betraying the ideals of democracy and freedom that they once pursued. Criticising Chen of being "corrupted by power" and close with Lee Teng-hui and black gold, Hsu and others urged voters who once supported DPP for its ideals not to vote for Chen, to give him a chance to "reflect on himself".

After the 2004 presidential election, Hsu, in protest of what he saw as an unfair election, arrived at Ketagalan Boulevard (in front of the presidential palace) on the night of March 24 and staged a 3-day hunger strike. He believed firmly that Chen Shui-bian cheated in the election and thought he was now fighting for democracy, just like what he did two decades ago.

He founded the Taiwan Democratic School in July 2004 which is aimed at "promoting a new democratic movement to sustain Taiwan's young democracy." It has advocated unity within the Pan-Blue Alliance.

In December 2004 he made an unsuccessful run in the Legislative Yuan election as an independent in the Taipei City South constituency. His platform opposed a NT$610.8 billion arms purchase from the U.S. and supported opening three direct links. Until 2006, Hsu and another two former chairman of DPP, Shih and Lin, also left DPP due to dissatisfied with Chen's policies and corruptions.

However, after KMT won two-thirds majority seats in Legislative Yuan in 2008 elections, Hsu disappointed to KMT because he was afraid KMT would back to authoritarian dictatorship, Hsu then came out to support DPP candidate Frank Hsieh in the 2008 presidential election even though he had been connected with the pan-blue coalition camp during much of the period Chen Shui-bian served as president.[2] After Chen left the office, Hsu backed to DPP. He has also been seen at events organised by the DPP since 2008. On March 25, 2011 he registered to participate in the DPP's primary to select the party's candidate for the 2012 presidential election.[3] In April 2012 Hsu nominated as a candidate for the DPP chairperson election to be held in May 2012,[4] but lost.

Cross-strait relations[edit]

In mid April 2013 during a press conference, Hsu called for a cross-strait political dialogue to rejuvenate the stagnant economy of Taiwan and for Taiwan to have a grand coalition government, adding that political dialogue with Beijing is not for political purpose, but rather to save the economy of Taiwan.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "DPP releases book commemorating the Kaohsiung Incident". Taipei Times. (Taipei: Central News Agency): 4, 2008-12-08, http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2004/12/08/2003214224
  2. ^ "Former DPP chairman Hsu joins Hsieh ranks". Taipei Times. 3, 2008-02-25, http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2008/02/25/2003402749
  3. ^ "Ex-DPP head throws hat into primary ring". Focus Taiwan 2011-03-25, http://focustaiwan.tw/ShowNews/WebNews_Detail.aspx?Type=aALL&ID=201103250020
  4. ^ "Hsu, Chai formally join DPP chairperson race". Taipei Times. 3, 2012-04-14, http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2012/04/14/2003530309
  5. ^ http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2013/04/13/2003559524

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Huang Shin-chieh
Chairperson of the Democratic Progressive Party
1992–1993
Succeeded by
Shih Ming-teh
Preceded by
Shih Ming-teh
Chairperson of the Democratic Progressive Party
1996–1998
Succeeded by
Lin Yi-hsiung