The National Day, also referred to as Double Ten Day or Double Tenth Day, commemorates the start of the Wuchang Uprising of October 10, 1911 (10-10 or double ten), which led to the collapse of the Qing Dynasty in China and establishment of the Republic of China on January 1, 1912. During the course of the Chinese Civil War, the government of the Republic of China lost control of mainland China, fleeing to Taiwan Island in December 1949.

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) website's country profile of Taiwan describes "an island which has for all practical purposes been independent since 1950, but which China regards as a rebel region that must be reunited with the mainland – by force if necessary.

“China has claimed sovereignty over Taiwan since the end of the Chinese civil war in 1949, when the defeated Nationalist government fled to the island as the communists, under Mao Zedong, swept to power.

“China insists that nations cannot have official relations with both China and Taiwan, with the result that Taiwan has formal diplomatic ties with only a few countries. The US is Taiwan's most important friend and protector.

“Despite its diplomatic isolation, Taiwan has become one of Asia's big traders. It is considered to have achieved an economic miracle, becoming one of the world's top producers of computer technology.”

This political status means that the Republic of China (Taiwan) only maintains a handful of full-fledged diplomatic missions abroad. In countries such as Hungary it has a "Taipei Representative Office", Taipei City being the capital of Taiwan.

The BBC says of the People’s Republic of China, also known as mainland China, that while in the 1980s the government allowed private enterprise, the “rate of economic change has not been matched by political reform, with the Communist Party – the world's largest political party – retaining its monopoly on power and maintaining strict control over the people”.

“ . . . since 2008 the two governments have moved towards a more cooperative atmosphere,” the BBC notes.


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