Taiwan's leading opposition party, the Kuomintang, will send a delegation to the Mainland next week. The tour is seen as a historic milestone, marking the first formal exchanges between the Kuomintang and the Communist Party of China in 55 years.
Kuomintang spokesman, Chang Yung-kung, told that Jiang Bingkun is expected to meet with mainland officials to discuss a future visit by Kuomintang chairman.
Headed by the party's vice-chairman, Jiang Bingkun, the 30-member delegation will arrive on Monday. It will visit Dr. Sun Yat-sen's Mausoleum in Nanjing, capital city of Jiangsu Province. The delegates will also visit the Mausoleum of the Seventy-two Martyrs in Guanzhou, capital city of Guandong Province.
Chang Yung-Kung, Kuomintang spokesman, said, "It's very meaningful for the delegation to visit Dr Sun Yat-sen's Mausoleum and the Mausoleum of the Seventy-two Martyrs. Cross-strait tensions, comparatively speaking, are running high at the moment. So I think it might be appropriate to bridge the two sides by paying homage to a historic character or events respected by both sides."
Discussions about a subsequent visit by Kuomintang chairman, Lien Chan, are another top issue on the delegation's agenda.
Chang said, "The key concern of Lien's visit will be whether he will have a chance to talk with high-ranking mainland officials to discuss cross-straits peace and some more concrete issues such as the direct mail, transport and trade links across the strait."
Chang Yung-Kung said the delegates will also meet some Taiwan business representatives during their Mainland visit and hold talks with local government officials.
(CCTV.com March 24, 2005)