Theory of the Undetermined Status of Taiwan

The Theory of the Undetermined Status of Taiwan (Chinese: 台灣地位未定論), also called the Theory of the Undetermined Sovereignty of Taiwan (Chinese: 台灣主權未定論), is one of the theories which describe the island of Taiwan's present legal status.

The theory originated from United States President Harry S. Truman's statement on 27 June 1950, regarding the Korean War, which had broken out two days earlier. In his statement, Truman said that it would be a direct threat to the United States' security in the western Pacific area if the communist forces occupied Taiwan, so he ordered the 7th Fleet to enter the Taiwan Strait to prevent any attack on the island. Truman stated: "The determination of the future status of Formosa must await the restoration of security in the Pacific, a peace settlement with Japan, or consideration by the United Nations."[1] Because of the statement, the Theory of the Undetermined Status of Taiwan came into existence.

Although Japan concluded the Treaty of San Francisco with the Allied Powers after World War II in 1951, in the treaty it merely "renounced" all right, title and claim[2] to Taiwan and the Pescadores without explicitly stating the sovereignty status of the two territories. Therefore, the Theory of the Undetermined Status of Taiwan is still supported by some politicians and jurists to this day.[3][4][5]

Supporters of the theory include, but are not limited to, supporters of the Taiwan independence movement. They believe that Taiwan's status should be determined by Taiwanese people through self-determination.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Harry S. Truman (27 June 1950). "Statement by the President on the Situation in Korea". Harry S. Truman Library and Museum. Retrieved 2 September 2015.
  2. ^ Treaty of San Francisco. 8 September 1951 – via Wikisource. Chapter II. Territory – Article 2 – (b) Japan renounces all right, title and claim to Formosa and the Pescadores.
  3. ^ Shirley A. Kan; Wayne M. Morrison (11 December 2014). "U.S.-Taiwan Relationship: Overview of Policy Issues" (PDF). Washington, D.C.: Congressional Research Service. p. 4. The United States has its own "one China" policy (vs. the PRC's "one China" principle) and position on Taiwan's status. Not recognizing the PRC's claim over Taiwan nor Taiwan as a sovereign state, U.S. policy has considered Taiwan's status as unsettled.
  4. ^ 曾韋禎 (3 May 2009). 台灣主權未定論 許世楷:日本外交界常識 [Koh Se-kai: Theory of the Undetermined Sovereignty of Taiwan Is a General Knowledge in the Japanese Diplomatic Community]. Liberty Times (in Chinese). Taipei. Retrieved 24 January 2015.
  5. ^ 林良昇 (24 October 2015). 國際法觀點 學者:台灣被中華民國政府佔領70年 [⟨International Law Perspective⟩ Scholar: Taiwan Has Been Occupied by the Government of the Republic of China for 70 Years]. Liberty Times (in Chinese). Taipei. Retrieved 12 December 2015.