China media: Taiwan election 'no rejection of Beijing'

Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou (C) speaks at a campaign rally ahead of local elections in Taipei, Taiwan, on 22 November 2014. Image copyright EPA
Image caption President Ma Ying-jeou (C) says he is taking responsibility for the local election defeat

State media warn Taiwan's resurgent opposition not to see its local election rout of the governing pro-Beijing Kuomintang (KMT) party as a mandate to push for independence.

Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeou has announced he is stepping down as KMT party chairman in response to the defeat, which was widely seen on the island as a rejection of his party's push for closer ties with Beijing.

An article in the official party paper, the People's Daily, warns the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to "discard fantasies" about achieving formal independence.

"As China's might and influence expand internationally, it will have more say in the cross-strait ties," Taiwan analyst Ni Yongjie tells the paper.

"It will be difficult for any political forces in Taiwan to resist the peaceful development of the relationship."

China Daily lays the blame for Mr Ma's defeat squarely on his domestic policies, denying any link to his pro-Beijing stance.

But it acknowledges that with fewer than two years left of Mr Ma's term in office, the KMT's loss will add "uncertainty" to ties with Beijing, and could create "major difficulties in producing more ground-breaking achievements".

The Haiwai Net website also warns the opposition camp against pushing its luck, saying Taiwan has benefited economically from a closer relationship with the mainland.

It also warns the KMT not to try to restore its electoral fortunes by disavowing the "1992 Consensus" - a meeting at which, in Beijing's view, all of Taiwan's main political forces pledged to respect the "one-China-principle". The DPP denies any such agreement exists.

In an interview with the international paper Global Times, researcher Sun Xiaobo is relaxed about the impact of the apparent political change in Taiwan, saying the "peaceful development of relations has become mainstream".

'Bunch of kids'

Meanwhile, Beijing papers are not impressed by the decision by the founders of Hong Kong's pro-democracy Occupy Central movement to turn themselves in to police.

Several state-controlled media outlets - including the website - accuse Benny Tai, Chan Kin-man and Chu Yiu-ming of "putting on a show".

The overseas edition of the People's Daily dismisses student activists' promise to go on hunger strike during the trio's detention as "meaningless", saying that Beijing will not respond to "illegal and extreme measures".

"After messing up Hong Kong for more than 60 days, the protest has come to halt," the paper states. "Now it is time for the law to deal with the organisers and participants."

Labelling the protesters a "bunch of kids", the Global Times tells them that they have not the "slightest chance of making a real difference", despite support from "their Western allies".

"By relying on the West to oppose the entire country with its 1.3-billion population and inciting some radical teenagers to damage Hong Kong's long-term prosperity and stability, the extreme opposition in Hong Kong will find their dream as distant as ever," it warns.

And finally, China's authorities have released a draft regulation making it a punishable offence for citizens to falsely register as a member of one of the country's ethnic minorities in order to gain favourable treatment.

According to the official news agency Xinhua, the ethnic affairs department will revoke fake identities and scrap any privileges granted as a result of a fraudulent claim.

Xiong Kunxin, an ethnic affairs analyst at Minzu University, China, tells the Global Times that students often pretend to be from an ethnic minority to gain extra points in the national college entrance examinations, while some officials do it to get promoted.

He adds that the new rules will be difficult to implement.

BBC Monitoring reports and analyses news from TV, radio, web and print media around the world. You can follow BBC Monitoring on Twitter and Facebook.

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