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Taiwanese pledge $9M for China quake victims


Agence France-Presse
First Posted 08:18:00 06/06/2008

Filed Under: Foreign Aid, China earthquake, Foreign affairs & international relations, Diplomacy

BEIJING -- Taiwan residents and companies pledged more than $9 million in one night to help rebuild schools in China's earthquake-hit region, state press reported here Friday.

The donations were made to a television show on Thursday evening aired to raise money for victims of the May 12 earthquake that devastated southwest Sichuan province and killed more than 69,000 people, Xinhua said.

Taiwan and mainland Chinese singers performed on the three-hour show which also featured video clips, the news agency said.

The report did not give details of the donors, other than to say they pledged a total of 64 million yuan ($9.38 million) to rebuild the many schools that collapsed in the quake, killing thousands of students.

By the end of May, Taiwan citizens had also donated 2,000 tons of cement, 100 satellite telephones, 100 tons of tents, sleeping bags and medical supplies, and other relief materials, the report said, citing the China government's Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council.

China has praised rival Taiwan's contribution to quake relief efforts in a sign of improving relations since the inauguration of the island's new leader.

Taiwan's government has pledged to donate 800 million Taiwan dollars (US$26.06 million) and the island's charities, companies and individuals have already donated more than two billion dollars since the quake.

Tensions between the two traditional rivals have eased substantially in the past few months, and the two have decided to resume talks next week, after a suspension of more than a decade.

Ma Ying-jeou, who took office in May as Taiwan's president, has vowed to mend ties with China.

Taiwan and China split in 1949 after a civil war but Beijing still sees the island as part of its territory awaiting reunification, by force if necessary.



Copyright 2014 Agence France-Presse. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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