INTRODUCTION TO TAIWAN'S LEGAL STATUS
The One China Policy of the U.S. Executive Branch is correct. This policy has one main tenet, which is the following:
The People's Republic of China is the sole legitimate government of China.
Many observers state that the One China Policy also includes the concept that "Taiwan is a part of China." Such a statement is totally incorrect.
The U.S. Executive Branch has never recognized the forcible incorporation of Taiwan into the territory of the Republic of China (ROC) or the People's Republic of China (PRC). This fact may be documented as follows:
Taiwan is not part of the ROC
In the case of Sheng v. Rogers (D.C. Circuit, Oct. 6, 1959), quoting from official pronouncements of the Department of State, the judges held that:
" . . . the provisional capital of the Republic of China has been at Taipei, Taiwan (Formosa) since December 1949; that the Government of the Republic of China exercises authority over the island; that the sovereignty of Formosa has not been transferred to China; and that Formosa is not a part of China as a country, at least not as yet, and not until and unless appropriate treaties are hereafter entered into. Formosa may be said to be a territory or an area occupied and administered by the Government of the Republic of China, but is not officially recognized as being a part of the Republic of China."
Taiwan is not part of the PRC
In the Congressional Research Service report China/Taiwan: Evolution of the "One China" Policy
dated July 9, 2007, the following points were made --
(1) The United States did not explicitly state the sovereign status of Taiwan in the three US-PRC Joint Communiques of 1972, 1979, and 1982.
(2) The United States "acknowledged" the "One China" position of both sides of the Taiwan Strait.
(3) US policy has not recognized the PRC's sovereignty over Taiwan;
(4) US policy has not recognized Taiwan as a sovereign country; and
(5) US policy has considered Taiwan's status as undetermined.
CONCLUSION: According to the San Francisco Peace Treaty of 1952, Taiwan is occupied territory of the United States of America. The ROC is a subordinate occupying power, beginning Oct. 25, 1945, and a government in exile, beginning mid-December 1949. There has been no change in these statuses to date. Under the One China Policy, the People's Republic of China is recognized as the sole legitimate government of China, but its national territory does not include Taiwan.
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