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Taiwan's President has Wrapped Up a High-Profile Visit to New York City - 2003-11-03

Taiwan's President Chen Shui-bian has wrapped up a high-profile visit to New York City that was criticized by mainland China.

Sunday, Taiwanese media showed footage of Mr. Chen on a boat sailing down New York's East River past the United Nations' headquarters. Pointing at the building, Mr. Chen predicted Taiwan will eventually win admission to the world body.

The Taiwanese president made his comment Saturday, a day after meeting with New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Earlier this week, China's Foreign Ministry said Mr. Chen's visit to New York is part of a "separatist" agenda that is also aimed at harming U-S-Chinese relations.

In an interview with the "U-S-A Today" newspaper, Mr. Chen rejected Chinese accusations that he plans to declare Taiwan an independent nation. But he defended his criticism of Beijing's "One China" policy, which says Taiwan is a rebel Chinese province.

The White House allowed Mr. Chen to receive more media coverage on this trip than on previous U-S visits, when he was largely confined to meeting with Taiwanese expatriates.

The Taiwanese president came to New York to receive an award from the International League of Human Rights.

He left New York Sunday for Panama, where he will attend that nation's centennial celebrations.