Taiwan president-elect urges China to talk with his government

Taiwan's President-elect Lai Ching-te has urged China to have the confidence to hold talks with his "legally elected government," saying that is the right way for cross-strait exchange.

Lai repeated his call for cross-strait talks without preconditions at a news conference on Thursday.

The Chinese government led by the Communist Party maintains that both sides of the Taiwan Strait belong to one China, which Taiwan's opposition Kuomintang party acknowledges but Lai's Democratic Progressive Party does not.

Beijing has rejected talks with DPP governments, but it has had exchanges with the Kuomintang. On April 10, Chinese President Xi Jinping met with former Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou in Beijing.

DPP officials cited Lai as noting at a party meeting on Wednesday that the ruling parties on both sides of the strait should have benign talks in a responsible manner.

Some media outlets in Taiwan described this comment as a goodwill appeal for talks with China, which denies Taiwan's sovereignty, as he proposed a framework for party-to-party dialogue.

Lai is set to take office on May 20.

The Chinese government views Lai as a separatist. But it appears to have toned down criticism of him since the January presidential election.