HONG KONG, December 9. /TASS/. China's chief negotiator with Taiwan, Chen Deming, arrived on Tuesday for an eight-day visit to the island.
The visit is attracting particular attention being the first by a senior Chinese official to the self-governing island since Taiwan's ruling Kuomintang (KMT) party suffered a landslide defeat in local elections on November 29. Support for the main opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which rejects an eventual reunification with China, heightened public concerns in Taiwan about closer links with Beijing.
Dozens of demonstrators chanting anti-Beijing slogans staged a protest when the delegation headed by Chen arrived at Taoyuan International Airport in northern Taiwan.
Chen, president of the Chinese mainland-based Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS), will meet his Taiwanese counterpart Lin Join-sane, chairman of the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF). The two non-governmental organisations, ARATS and SEF, are authorised by the Chinese mainland and Taiwan, respectively, to handle cross-Strait affairs.