Exclusion of mainland students from Taiwan universities ?inhuman?
It is inhuman to exclude students from the Chinese mainland who are enrolled at universities in Taiwan and the children of cross-Straits marriages from returning to the island, Zhu Fenglian, a spokeswoman for the State Council's Taiwan Affairs Office, said on Thursday.
The island authorities recently announced that students from 11 countries and regions who are enrolled at universities in Taiwan can return to the island, including those from Hong Kong and Macao.
However, about 7,600 students from the Chinese mainland are among 26,000 unable to return to campuses on the island due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The same ban on entry to the island has been imposed on the children of cross-Straits marriages ? where one parent is from the Chinese mainland
Zhu said, "Their rights and interests should be respected and protected."
After the novel coronavirus outbreak, the island's ruling Democratic Progressive Party adopted discriminatory measures to restrict mainland students and children of cross-Straits marriages from traveling to the island, she said.
Universities in Taiwan began new terms at the end of February, but mainland students were unable to return to the island because visits by mainland residents to Taiwan have been suspended since Feb 6.
"It has seriously damaged their legitimate rights and interests," Zhu said. "Such political manipulation, which deviates from the standpoint of humanity, has been criticized by the public."
She urged the DPP authorities to eliminate discriminatory measures as soon as possible.
"They should respect the needs of mainland students and families of cross-Straits marriages to return to the island to study and unite with family members," she said.
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