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Topic

RESOLVED: The Republic of China is a Sovereign State

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Politics
Time for argument
Two weeks
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Republic of China: Taiwan,[II] officially the Republic of China (ROC),[I][h] is a country[22][23][24][25][26] in East Asia, at the junction of the East and South China Seas in the northwestern Pacific Ocean, with the People's Republic of China (PRC) to the northwest, Japan to the northeast, and the Philippines to the south. (Taken from Wikipedia).

State: A politically organized body of people usually occupying a definite territory. (Taken from Merriam Webster)

Sovereign: One possessing or held to possess supreme political power or sovereignty (Taken from Merriam Webster)

Independent: Not dependent, such as: not subject to control by others: (SELF-GOVERNING) (Taken from Merriam Webster)

The Burden of Proof is shared. As PRO, I have to prove that the Republic of China is a sovereign state. CON must prove that the Republic of China is not a sovereign state. The qualifications of a sovereign state are up for debate.

Rules:
1) A singular forfeit is an instant loss
2) No kritiks
3) No new arguments in round 5
4) All debate content has to be WITHIN the debate arguments (No debate/citations in the comments!)

Accepting this debate means you accept these rules. If you want a rule change, please say so in the comments, BEFORE accepting.

Round 1
Pro

BE IT RESOLVED:
The Republic of China is a Sovereign State 

Burden of Proof: Shared Position: Pro Debate Type: Online Debate

Credit:
Crocodile and Intelligence_06 have debated a topic extremely similar to this one on the site already. I have taken inspiration (and some sources) from Crocodile’s arguments in that debate and my general case is very similar.

Key Definitions:

Republic of China: Taiwan,[II] officially the Republic of China (ROC),[I][h] is a country[22][23][24][25][26] in East Asia, at the junction of the East and South China Seas in the northwestern Pacific Ocean, with the People's Republic of China (PRC) to the northwest, Japan to the northeast, and the Philippines to the south. (Taken from Wikipedia). Referenced as Taiwan, ROC or RoC.

State: A politically organized body of people usually occupying a definite territory. (Taken from Merriam Webster)

Sovereign: One possessing or held to possess supreme political power or sovereignty (Taken from Merriam Webster)

Independent: Not dependent, such as: not subject to control by others: (SELF-GOVERNING) (Taken from Merriam Webster)

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Interpretation of the Resolution

As PRO, I have to prove that the Republic of China fulfills the qualifications of a sovereign state.  CON must prove that the Republic of China does not fulfill the qualifications of a sovereign state. The qualifications of a sovereign state are up for debate. Thus, this debate will revolve around two central arguments, the qualifications of a state, and whether the Republic of China fulfills those qualifications.

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The Qualifications of a Sovereign State

Premises of the Montevideo Convention:
According to the Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States: “A state as a person of international law should possess the following qualifications:
  1. a permanent population;
  2. a defined territory;
  3. government, and
  4. capacity to enter relations with the other states.” [1]

In Article 3 of the Convention: “The political existence of the state is independent of recognition by the other states.”

The Montevideo Convention is an example of the Declarative Theory of Statehood.[3] Fulfilling the requirements of the Montevideo Convention/Declarative Theory makes a particular society a sovereign state.


Authority of the Montevideo Convention:

The Montevideo Convention has been ratified by 17 states and is followed by the European Union [1 & 2]. It is considered as a restatement of customary international law (Declarative Theory), meaning it applies not only to the signatories, but also all subjects of international law. [2] 

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CONTENTION: Taiwan Fulfills All Qualifications

The qualifications of a sovereign state have been defined above. A (summary of an) analysis of those terms can be described in source 3:

“The term 'permanent population' defines the community that has the intention to inhabit the territory permanently and is capable to support the superstructure of the State, though there is no requirement of a minimum population. The government must be capable of exercising effective control over a territory and population (the requirement known in legal theory as 'effective control test') and guarantee the protection of basic human rights by legal methods and policies. The 'capacity to enter into relations with other states' reflects the entity's degree of independence.” [3 cited from 4]

The ROC must have an intention to inhabit the territory permanently and capability to support the structure of the State.

The population of the ROC was around 23 million in 2019. In 2022, the live count sits around 24 million. There has been a consistent growth of the population since 1950.[5] Because of this consistent growth for more than 70 years, it is safe to assume that the population is permanent and has the intention to inhabit the ROC permanently.

The government of the ROC has successfully ruled over the island’s territories for 73 years. The democratic structure of the ROC has maintained itself for 35 years.[6] It is clear that the population has the capability to support the ROC and the government of the ROC.



The ROC must have a government capable of exercising effective control over a territory and population and guarantee the protection of basic human rights by legal methods and policies.

As shown in both of the Taiwan Strait Crises, the Republic of China has been able to hold almost all of its territory against invaders (most notably, the PRC).[8&9]  Since the strait crises, the ROC has not lost any of its territory, thus demonstrating effective control.

The ROC has demonstrated that its citizens can enjoy human rights. In a FreedomHouse report, the ROC received the highest score possible, and it is regarded as one of the freest nations in Asia. [7] Rights are obtained via legal methods and policies, and example of which is when the ROC legalized gay marriage.[7]


The ROC must have the capacity to enter into relations with other states. 

The ROC has trade relationships with the US, Japan, the PRC, and more.[10] The Republic of China has multiple treaties with other states, including the US. [11] It has formal diplomatic relations with 13 of the UN states, and informal relations with 58 of them. [12] Therefore, it has the capacity to enter into relations with other states.


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CONCLUSION

My argument is simple. The Montevideo Convention, Declarative Theory of Statehood, and customary international law provide qualifications for being a sovereign state. The Republic of China passes all of those qualifications with flying colors. Therefore, the Republic of China is a sovereign state.

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Sources:



Wikipedia is generally a reliable source of information. All claims taken from the Wikipedia article are cited with reliable sources in the article.


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Round 2
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Round 3
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