Deputy head named at Taiwan Affairs Office
Liu Jieyi, China’s former permanent representative to the United Nations, has been appointed deputy director of the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, according to the office’s website on Wednesday.
He served as China’s ambassador to the United Nations from August 2013 until last month, when he was recalled to Beijing for the new role.
Liu, 59, a native of Beijing, started his career in 1981 in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He worked in the ministry’s international organizations and conferences, arms control, and North American and Oceanian affairs departments.
He also served as the deputy head of the International Department of Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and the Red Cross Society of China from May 2009 to August 2013.
His wife, Zhang Qiyue, is the consul general of China in New York.
Liu is known for his strong and firm attitude when representing China in the UN.
The appointment of Liu stirred heated discussion in Taiwan, gaining massive coverage in local media in the last two days.
Taipei-based China Times newspaper called Liu “a veteran diplomat” and recalled his tough and strong response in the UN in February 2017.
“The Taiwan issue is a domestic issue with complicated international indicators. It will better orientate the Taiwan question to have people with backgrounds in international relations and diplomacy working in the Taiwan Affairs Office,” said Zhu Songling, a professor at the Institute of Taiwan Studies of Beijing Union University.
The current head of the Taiwan affairs office, Zhang Zhijun, has been serving in the post since 2013. Prior to that, he worked in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the International Department of the Central Committee of the CPC.
Liu Jieyi, deputy head of Taiwan Affairs Office