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Taiwan elections

Taiwan's Tsai and Han clash over China in impromptu televised debate

Candidates for January's presidential election trade barbs over island's status

Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen and opponent Han Kuo-yu (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

TAIPEI -- An event billed as the first televised policy presentation for Taiwan's presidential candidates turned into an impromptu debate, as incumbent Tsai Ing-wen and main rival Han Kuo-yu traded barbs over cross-strait relations and trade.

On Wednesday, the three candidates -- the independence-leaning Democratic Progressive Party's Tsai, the Beijing-friendly Kuomintang's Han, and People First Party Chairman James Soong, also pro-Beijing -- were supposed to discuss their platforms one-by-one, but gave little hint as to what policies they would implement after becoming president.

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