'I'm from Taiwan' Olympic gold medalist stirs up contentious debate with China

A TAIWANESE Olympic gold medalist made a controversial comment about the fact that Taiwan competes under the name Chinese Taipei in the Olympic games.

China trying to ‘intimidate Taiwan into negotiations’ says expert

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On Saturday, Taiwan’s Lee Yang and Wang Chi-Lin beat China in the badminton men’s doubles finals, securing them an Olympic gold medal. Gold medalist Wang Chi-Lin made the controversial comment amid growing tensions with China.

“I’m from Taiwan,” he commented on Facebook.

The Taiwanese compete as the Chinese Taipei team – a name insisted by China who claim the island.

The Olympian’s comment sparked a conversation online about whether the Chinese Taipei team should be rebranded as the Taiwan team.

“Support competing in the Olympics under Taiwan!” a social media user posted.

READ MORE: Japan demands global response for ‘survival of Taiwan’

Taiwan Olympic gold medalists

The Taiwanese compete as the Chinese Taipei team – a name insisted by China who claim the island (Image: Getty)

Taiwan Olympic gold medalists

Chinese President Xi Jinping has been very open about his plans to retake Taiwan (Image: Getty)

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“Let the world see the name of Taiwan!”

Tensions have been rising between China and Taiwan as Beijing has suggested the possibility of invading their island neighbour.

Taiwan is a democratically ruled nation, however, China claims sovereignty over the island and has indicated plans on merging it with the mainland.

China has not ruled out using force to achieve this.

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China military power (Image: Express)

Chinese President Xi Jinping has been very open about his plans to retake Taiwan.

Speaking at the Communist Party’s 100th birthday celebrations, he repeated China’s plans to take back the island.

“Resolving the issue of Taiwan and achieving the complete unification of China is a historical mission and the unshakable commitment of the Communist Party of China,” he said.

The Olympic team Chinese Taipei started to compete under that name in the late 1970s in a compromise between Taipei’s Olympic Committee and the International Olympic Committee.

Taiwan competed without its flag and national anthem and the same rules were applied to other sporting competitions.

William Murphy

William Murphy

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